When living car-free many people borrow or rent a car when they need to transport larger items, but one Belfast-based bicycle user has come up with a novel approach — a crowdsourced Belfast Community Cargo Bike.
With the Belfast Community Cargo Bike the idea is that the bike will be provided for the Belfast area utility bicycle community who support the project on gofundme.com — for the likes of moving house, moving people, or an unusually large bit of cargo, like lager power tools or boxes which won’t fit on the average bicycle.
Ellen Murray explains on gofundme.com: “I’ve frequently been frustrated since getting rid of my car that I just couldn’t carry enough on my bicycle, whether that was an appliance, boxes or a friend or loved one. I’ve been looking for an affordable large cargo bike for a while now, and am interested in providing something that many people can use, since I don’t need it all the time.”
Seeking just a total of £500 (€682), the project is based on buying and refitting an older cargo bike. Ellen plans to update the bike by adding a 7-speed internal hub gearing system, as well as a new lighting system, brakes, handlebars and saddle.
She adds: “I want to raise £500 to buy and restore a cargo bike that’s currently available for sale in Northern Ireland. It needs some work but is a terrifically sturdy machine, and would be very useful to the many people who’ve told me they share their frustrations about bicycle cargo. It is capable of carrying over 100kg of cargo, so is more than OK for shuttling kids (or adults) around, or for moving house on.
Hello Reader... IrishCycle.com is a reader-funded journalism publication. Effectively it's an online newspaper covering news and analyses of cycling and related issues, including cycle route designs, legal changes, and pollical and cultural issues.
There are examples, big and small, which show that the reader-funded or listener-funding model can work to support journalism -- from the Dublin Inquirer and The Guardian to many podcasts. To make it work for IrishCycle.com, it just needs enough people like you to believe!
Monthly subscriptions will give IrishCycle.com's journalism a dependable base of support. But please don't take free access for granted. Last year IrishCycle.com had an average of 15,800 readers per month and we know our readers include people who cycle and those who don't, politicians, officials and campaigners.
I know only a small percentage of readers will see the value of keeping this open enough to subscribe, that's the reality of the reader-funded model. But more support is needed to keep this show on the road.
The funding drive was started in November 2021 and, as of the start of February, 210 readers have kindly become monthly subscribers -- thank you very much to all that have!
But currently, it's only around 1.3% of readers who subscribe. So, if you can, please join them and subscribe today via ko-fi.com/irishcycle/tiers