Sunday June 6th, 2021

Posted at 11:00am

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City Cyclery has been making big moves — literally — as they settle in to their new home in Ford City.

Co-owners Ben Baillargeon and Thad Renaud, who made the move from the Erie Street area this time around, have been enjoying the new location after their immense efforts to make the new space great and welcoming.

Co-owner of City Cyclery, Ben Baillargeon, stands happily in his shop fixing up a customers bicycle.

“The new spot has been great,” Baillargeon remarks. “We love having the ability to have foot traffic and other businesses around us; we’re more used to being sought out. It’s nice having the Ford City BIA working with us. The community around here has been extremely supportive.”

“The Ford City BIA has been nothing but great to us,” Renaud emphasizes. “They started working on our behalf months before we even moved, advertising that we were coming. Anything we need, they were helpful for us. This spot feels like home; it’s customized the way we like it, and is working really well for us. The store flows nicely, and people can find us much more easily.”

We simply outgrew the old space. It couldn’t accommodate for everything we wanted to do, and this space will allow for much more.”

Along with their employee Taylor McArthur, the owners made the move from their old space late last year to early this year, opening the new shop up January 12th, 2021. “Everyone wanted us to do well,” Baillargeon notes, as even their previous landlords at Lessor Ltd assisted greatly with the move. “They believed in us,” he regards with a smile.

 

“We opened up as a soft-open, despite not really having a lot of bikes for sale,” Renaud mentions. “We had whatever inventory we had at the old spot and opened up, ready to repair and get bikes customers brought in and out.”

All workers at the City Cyclery are avid cyclists and bike enthusiasts themselves. Renaud, who has been actively cycling for 15 years, started off with commuting to work on his bike. “My doctor recommended I start to do something active. I started riding a bike and everything changed; my whole diet, and how I was feeling…I was feeling much better.”

Co-owner Thad Renaud sitting at the new shop’s front desk after-hours, preparing for business.

Baillargeon has also been working in the industry of cycling and bicycles for over a dozen years, and McArthur has been a cyclist for six years, with interest in triathlons. The crew is experienced in all things cycling. They are happy and enthusiastic to help their customers whether it comes to finding the best bike, accessory, or repairing their items with care.

This past year with the pandemic hitting worldwide, people have been finding new hobbies or going back to things they did with more time on their hands. One of those things was cycling.

“The last year and a bit, there has for sure been a huge boom in demand for bicycles and bicycle repairs, since people finally have the time,” McArthur explains.

With that boom of popularity, however, came difficulties as well: product had become harder to source. “It’s been quite the task combatting with the lack of resources… the lack of product,” McArthur notes. “Availability on products and shipping time has been poor.”

They persevered however, enjoying their updated space, and finding happiness helping customers. The team made do with what they had, and were able to fix up and repair a lot of local’s bikes they already had, while being able to provide the best gear, accessories, and advise to their new and returning customers.

Taylor McArthur, an employee at City Cyclery, seen working in the new shop.

The shop has been finally receiving larger shipments of bikes in the later spring, with more and more bicycles being available as the days go by. Although they do regard the added stress working under a pandemic has given, Renaud also notes how “people are almost more accommodating now, and are understanding of our struggle, which makes it less cumbersome. We get lines outside the store, but people have been patient and seem to be getting used to it.”

The store also allows for customers to call and book an appointment in order to work with their schedules. City Cyclery also offers the ability to be added to a bike waitlist if you have your eyes on a particular make and model.

“[The pandemic] has forced us to slow things down. It’s a bit more of a personalized experience as we really only work with one customer at a time,” Renaud also says.

“The cycling industry has definitely developed over the past 20 years,” McArthur explains. “There’s a bike for everybody—and you can really customized them any way you want. It’s pretty easy to accommodate people. It’s a rewarding industry to be in being able to cater to peoples needs and wants and see the excitement come from them. Different wheel sizes, frames… we can accommodate absolutely everybody.”

City Cyclery sells, and can fix, bikes of all makes and models for anyone to find their perfect two-wheeler.

City Cyclery sells a large abundance and variety of cycling products, including tires, bells, locks, lights, bike computers, basic maintenance items, gloves and much more. In addition to that, they are hoping to continue to provide spin classes on the store front floor, which they also did before the pandemic had made them pause the program.

Keep up with what’s new and happening at City Cyclery by following their Facebook page here and check out their website here. Visit their new location yourself at 1008 Drouillard Road.

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