Science North is Canada’s 2nd largest science center and Northern Ontario’s most popular tourist destination, located in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. It attracts more than 300,000 visitors a year. Some of those arrive by bicycle, as do some of the employees. To support alternative means of transportation and serve Science North’s green agenda, the center opened a new covered bike shelter on June 15 engineered by Duo-Gard.
The 3-sided shelter is a first for the center, which previously had four uncovered bike racks at different locations on the property. “We had funding from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport,” says Jessica Hall, Manager of the Grants Program, “to build a covered bike shelter and repair station that would increase cycling and promote active living in our community.”
Science North chose Duo-Gard’s Sentinel model, which combines a traditional profile with contemporary flair. At 36’x8’, the shelter contains nine inverted U-racks accommodating 18 bikes. It features dark bronze aluminum framing and a standing-seam hip roof in dark green. There are possibilities for adding solar LED lighting in a few years.
“The shelter sits 75 feet from the main entrance, so we wanted something unobtrusive, something that would blend well with the nearby wooded area,” says Dave Kelly, IT Services Manager.
Amenities for safety and convenience were important. The center chose a bike repair station and a pumping station from Duo-Gard’s line of 250-plus biking products to complement the shelter. “With these, riders can quickly make minor repairs and be back on the road,” says Kelly.
Gaining popularity with many Canadian bikers are “fat bikes” with large tires that can more easily travel on snow and ice. Kelly says the center is eager to see if the shelter, with its covered convenience, helps facilitate more year-round biking.
Science North opened in 1984 and provides “inspirational, educational and entertaining science experiences.” Part of those experiences includes learning about sustainability and greening the environment. As more emphasis falls on alternative transportation, cycling plays a major role.
“Reactions to the shelter have been very positive,” Jessica Hall says, “including from our staff. It is a great addition to the science center, and we hope it will help to position Sudbury as a premier destination for cycling tourism.”
Photos courtesy of Science North