Here at “Borderstan People,” we like to profile local movers and shakers who are spicing up the neighborhood in a variety of ways. Recently, we caught up with Bike Rack owner Chuck Harney to chat about business, the neighborhood and biking in the city.
Borderstan: When did you start Bike Rack and what was your inspiration for beginning the business?
Harney: The shop opened in May 2007. I actually wrote the business plan in 1997. My inspiration came from being a cyclist and living in a part of the city that was not served by a shop. Personally, I was also inspired by my desire to own my own business.
Borderstan: Do you live in the neighborhood?
Harney: I live in Adams Morgan
Borderstan: When did you move to DC?
Harney: I moved to DC from Los Angeles in 1991
Borderstan: What about this neighborhood made you chose your location?
Harney: Our current location was not my first choice. However, as development in the Logan Circle area began to take off, it seemed like a good idea to be as close to 14th Street as possible.
Borderstan: What can customers expect from your business?
Harney: In my opinion and experience, our customers can expect a really friendly and knowledgeable staff, absolutely no attitude and we do not look down on anyone, a clean and attractive store stocked with the items that our customers tell us they want through their choices and feedback, a high level of community involvement and professional and expert repair service.
Borderstan: Do you think DC is a biker friendly city? Why or why not?
Harney: I do believe that DC is a much friendlier city toward cyclists than it has been before at anytime. I also believe that it will continue to become a friendlier city toward cyclists in the future. This is the result of local leaders who believe that DC can become a “cyclist’s city” and to local groups and organizations who continue to lobby for things like bikeshare, bike lanes, bike parking, education for cyclists and motorists, alike, and an enforcement of motor vehicle laws in regards to cyclists.
Borderstan: Where is your favorite place to bike in the city?
Harney: I am not big on riding in the city – I like to ride out of the city and keep going. However DC has a lot of great hill climbs, and of course there is Hains Point where I can be found knocking out a 40k time trial on a hot summer morning.
Borderstan: What is your best advice for someone either interested in starting to bike or just getting into biking?
Harney: Come see me.
Borderstan: Where’s your favorite place to hang out in the neighborhood?
Harney: That’s a leading question, I dont want to upset anyone, so I will say that I love the entire neighborhood, there is no bad place to hang out.
The Bike Rack (1412 Q Street NW) is open Monday though Friday from 8 am until 7 pm, on Saturday from 10 am until 6 pm and on Sunday from 10 am until 5 pm.