Richmond Co-op Does More Than Just Fix Bikes

Sep. 7, 2012 / By

News Feature, Monica Quesada

James Johnson, 20, is a bike mechanic. Born and raised in Richmond, Johnson has for years fixed bikes out of his own garage, all the while dreaming of opening up a bike shop where he could work with the proper tools, “without having to use hammers and stuff.”

Johnson’s dream became reality less than a year ago when – along with a group of other young people from Richmond, and under the direction of Brian Drayton, executive director of a non-profit called Richmond Spokes – he launched Spokeshop Bike Lounge, the only bike shop in the city.

“Spokeshop isn’t the regular bike shop,” Johnson said. “There’s not many bike shops where you can come in and instead of buying stuff just hang out, chat with the staff, come use the free wifi, and read bike magazines and stuff in peace, without people bothering you.”

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