If you’ve spent time in cities like Denver or Portland, you know that Nashville isn’t the most bikeable place around. But while Music City has a long way to go to match others, the fact that new bike lanes are being painted on a regular basis shows that we are heading in the right direction.
Having outgrown its digs, Halcyon Bike Shop is also a testament to the movement. A cornerstone of the 12 South neighborhood, the shop moved last week into a much-improved, larger space, just across the street from the original location that opened in 2008.
The only shop around that deals in used bikes exclusively, Halcyon is a must-visit shop for the uninitiated, enthusiasts and anyone else looking for quality and affordability. “We sell everything from a basic cruiser to a nice-as-it-gets road bike with all the bells and whistles,” said mechanic/salesman Chris Callis. “And when we get lucky, we’ll sell a full-suspension mountain bike.” On a recent visit, Halycon’s line included cruisers like a vintage 1960s Columbia ($200), a modern Tomasini road bike ($2,000) and nerd candy like a rare Tom Ritchey ($1,500).
In addition to bikes, parts and accessories, Halcyon’s new space will host periodic parties and display local art. The shop also features free-to-use repair stations for do-it-yourselfers, a “junkyard dog” named Baby and a bike repair program for Nashville’s underprivileged youth. Halcyon is more than a small local business, it’s an authentic member of the community.
“One of the reasons we don’t have advertising is because we want people to come in and talk to us,” owner Andrew Park said at the new shop, which was constructed largely from the demolished remains of a former elementary school, wine bar and college gymnasium. “For me, biking has been therapy through and through – mental, physical. It’s enlightening. It’s just an extremely powerful tool.”
With safety and awareness now on the upswing in Nashville, there’s no reason you can’t ditch the gas-guzzler for some of your local transportation. “Most people don’t realize that the metro area is not that big,” Callis said. “Anybody who lives in an area where you can get around safely and conveniently has no excuse not to own a bike.”
Stop by the new Halcyon Bike Shop where they recommend test riding as many bikes as you can before making a purchase.