Support Your Local Bike Shop
According to AAA, Americans spend an average of more than $8,000 per year on automobile ownership. 4/5 of that money (gas, insurance, financing) leaves the local economy. As Elly Blue has argued in her series “Bikenomics: how bicycling will save the economy (if we let it),”
bikes are a great way to boost the local economy. Not only does bicycling support the bike-related economy (like the local bike shop) that employs local people, but when people use their bikes to shop, the dollars tend to stay in the local economy, as bicyclists are more likely to stop and shop at smaller, locally-owned stores, not big-box behemoths surrounded by acres of parking lots.
The revenue generated by bike-related economic activity is surprisingly large. A 2008 study in Portland, OR, found that bike-related industries contributed $90 million to the local economy each year. In Wisconsin, the contribution to the state economy is estimated to be more than $1.5 billion annually.
So, ride your bike. Shop locally when you can. And, support your local bike shop.