There are a lot of bikes on campus. That’s just a fact. There are bike bugging programs so that you can avoid having your bike stolen or lost, but even then, there are always people who just decided it isn’t worth it to go get their bike again. They leave them tied up on a bike rack somewhere, never to be ridden again.
Or, at least, that’s what you might think happens. But not at Ohio State.
There’s a program called the summer bicycle abatement program where the Department of Transportation and Traffic Management sweeps campus for bikes and then collects them to be reused if they aren’t moved.
(No, it’s not just a random day where they gather bikes on campus. The bikes are tagged with a note that basically says “This has to be moved within two weeks or we’re moving it ourselves.”)
From there, the bikes are held at impound for 90 days, and if no one claims it, it enters the bicycle abatement program. Here’s where I started to get emotional.
Through the bicycle abatement program, Ohio State donates hundreds of bikes to Third Hand Bike Co-Op, a Columbus-based nonprofit that provides low-cost bikes and repairs in the city.
“The good news-bad news is they have a huge number of bicycles that they wind up turning over to us,” Sing said. “But whatever we get we’re going to make our best effort to try and put that bicycle back together, make sure it’s in safe, rideable condition, and then offer that back out to the public.”– Dab Sing, coordinator, Third Hand Bike
I know I shouldn’t be this emotional over lost bikes but… here we are 😭😭😭
Oh, and btw, if you think your bike has been impounded, feel free to check out the transportation and traffic management page for impounded bikes.
Header photo credit: Shutterstock.