O’FALLON – The Bike Surgeon is preparing to move its practice to downtown O’Fallon at the end of the month.
Owner Jon Greenstreet said the decision to locate in O’Fallon was completed was an easy one.
“This is where it’s at. For us, this community is absolutely where its at. We’ve got a lot of our customers that live in O’Fallon and Shiloh. We’ve got plenty that live in Belleville, Nashville, and Our Vernon. You name it, they’re all over the place. We wanted to be in a central location and we felt really connected to the community. We live here, my kids go to school here, I went to school at St. Clare, I know O’Fallon,” said Greenstreet.
The new shop will be located at 201 East State Street across the street from Sweet Katie Bee’s. The Bike Surgeon has been looking for a new home for a while now. Greenstreet said there were a few issues with the Shiloh location that were out of his control to fix.
“Where we’ve been at has been a phenomenal location, but we began to struggle only a couple of years after we opened with the traffic and getting rides out of the shopping center and up the hill. It was definitely something that we hadn’t anticipated. We had hoped someday there would be an initiative to pave the shoulders at least or bring a bike trail down, based on the progressiveness we’ve seen in surrounding counties. That never came to be, which is unfortunate,” said Greenstreet. “We would have rides on Tuesday nights that would average 100 riders. Then this year, specifically when Memorial Hospital opened, which is a great thing to happen, but it dramatically increased the traffic on Frank Scott and we saw the participation in that ride cut in half. Only 50, 60 riders were the average this year. Even though there was no specific incident, it was too uncomfortable, too much traffic and wasn’t a fun place to ride up anymore. So we’ve been looking for a more rideable location.”
Greenstreet said finding a new home was difficult but downtown O’Fallon attracted him.
“Everything we would find would be maybe a little better, but has the potential to not be once it gets built up or its a lot better but so far off of the beaten path it would be hard to get to. We looked at downtown a number of times. Downtown O’Fallon has really grown over the past few years and developed very nicely. We’re seeing some real positive things and that’s one of the reasons we started to focus here. It has the capacity to host rides from here, but it also has the traffic flow we want. We don’t want to get gone and lost. We weren’t looking to cut back and save money, it was a goal to find something that works better for our clientele,” he explained.
Riders already use many of the roads in O’Fallon, so the downtown location offers the Bike Surgeon the opportunity to launch rides more easily.
“Most of our rides we would take a portion of Lincoln, maybe go out to Seven Hills, or even go along State, even when we were leaving from Shiloh. So we’ll be using the same avenues we were using before and we won’t have the big ugly traffic mess. Most of those streets, State, Lincoln, have big wide shoulders and will work really well,” said Greenstreet.
When asked what will be different about the new location versus the old shop, Greenstreet said the social nature will be heavily enhanced.
“We’re looking to create a lot more social opportunities. A lot more places for customers and riders to come hang out and launch rides from. We have over 25 parking spots on our property here and there are over 100 spots where they’re doing the Destination O’Fallon, and over 30 across the street. So there’s lots of parking which is important in the downtown area. Getting those riders and customers in and give them a place to launch from and hang out after the ride and have a comfortable space to do that is something we really wanted,” he said.
The Bike Surgeon is also adding more space in the Fit Studio and the Wrench Area. They will have more floor space as well to market products and bikes. Greenstreet said he hopes being located downtown will help introduce some of the businesses already located there to his client base and to introduce his shop to their clients.
“I’m pretty excited to hopefully bring some of our customers to the surrounding downtown businesses and help them become their customers too. Hopefully our customer base will help grow their customer base and we may see the same. We’re pretty excited about that and hope that works out well,” he said.
The new location will be open for business on Monday, January 30. The Shiloh location will no longer be open as of that date. Despite the upcoming opening date, Greenstreet said work will continue at the East State Street location throughout the rest of the year.
“For the next 30 days, we’re going to be putting the finishing touches to this location. We’ll be live and open for business but if you come in on the 30th and check it out and then come back on February 15th, it’ll be a little different. And then if you come back on March 1st, it’ll be pretty close to finalized on the inside of the space. If you know us and have been our customer for a while, you know us and know we’re always changing stuff up and adding something new. During 2017 our goal is, over the summer and fall, to do the outside renovations. We’re looking at a lot of the historical aspects to the building. It used to be an Oldsmobile dealership that had a really cool art deco design, had a gas station out front. It had some cool things going on and we want to bring that in as inspiration. We want to really add to the cityscape downtown,” said Greenstreet.
For more details, check out bikesurgeon.com.