CINCINNATI — Weekends in Loveland imply full parking heaps, busy trails and dozens and dozens of bikes buzzing by on the Little Miami Scenic Path.
In the meantime, the trailside companies are buzzing as effectively, notably Loveland Bike Rental, the place homeowners are hoping to trip the 2020 bike growth into this upcoming biking season.
The rental store is Conner Wilson’s household enterprise. he stated most weekends, he’s the one prepping the bikes, filling tires, cleansing the seats and handlebars and making minor repairs.
“That is my fifth summer season working right here,” Wilson stated.
He’s hoping it’s one other busy one as effectively. Like retailers throughout the nation, Loveland noticed a motorcycle growth in 2020. Even with the store closed for 2 and a half months, Wilson stated leases had been up 50% from 2019.
“We had like a number of record-breaking days,” he stated.
Nationwide, $4.1 billion value of bikes had been bought between January and October of 2020, a 62% improve from the earlier yr, based on NPD Group, a market analysis firm.
Seemingly, everybody wished their palms on a motorcycle final summer season and with sellers dealing with months-long backlogs, renting turned a preferred selection.
“It was actually good for enterprise that’s for positive however we had been working out of bikes like day by day,” Wilson stated.
The spike in curiosity additionally led to components shortages, setting again retailers like Loveland’s.
“I feel that the bike producers are beginning to catch up now so there’s much less folks coming to lease however there’s nonetheless lots of people,” Wilson stated.
That’s why the rental store spent its off months getting forward of the difficulty. Loveland Bike Rental has purchased extra bikes, employed extra folks and improved the customer support season, all within the hopes the bike growth continues, the proprietor stated.
Wilson is optimistic regardless of indicators curiosity in biking may wane as vaccines change into extra obtainable and bike shares have dropped since their summer season peaks.
The shop isn’t seeing numbers like they noticed final yr, however he stated spring 2021 is off to an excellent begin.
“As quickly as church lets out we get completely swamped as a result of all people needs to trip bikes after church,” he stated.
It’s not simply bike retailers hoping for curiosity to remain excessive. Locations like Loveland Bike Rental see probably the most direct influence, however enterprise homeowners throughout city stated a busy bike path has a trickle-down impact on them too.
Final yr, Tri-State Trails reported bike visitors jumped 40% in Loveland about the identical time shops and eating places had been reopening and getting again to serving trailside clients.
With a view to preserve that going, Wilson stated his store is making an attempt to promote clients on a pastime, not simply a day out.
“Now we have an incredible path that goes subsequent to the river. It has some tremendous scenic views and that’s very nice,” he stated.
In the end, he hopes the trip, in addition to the lodging alongside the path, are what preserve folks coming again season after season.