PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County nonprofit The ReCyclery will temporarily close its retail store and maintenance shop as it struggles to bring in revenue.
The nonprofit will continue to operate with cycling programs and education, the organization said in a news release, but the repair shop and retail store will close as of Dec. 23.
“Our business model has evolved into one that heavily relies on the full-service repair shop to financially support program and mission-driven operations,” the release said. “This model has not been financially, socially, or humanly sustainable for some time and has left us with few resources to intentionally participate in and grow programs and services that our community needs.”
The ReCyclery was started in 2007 when brothers Chauncey and Dash Tudhope-Locklear began doing bike repairs outside the Port Townsend Food Co-op and grew it into a larger organization with paid staff and interns. The ReCyclery moved to its current location at Blaine and Kearney streets in 2011.
The ReCyclery offered open shop hours, which for a donation of $5 allowed members of the public to make their own bike repairs with the assistance of the organization’s tools and staff. The organization also ran several programs to encourage biking and offered bike safety courses to people of all ages.
There were also programs to provide bikes to those who could not afford them, either through a donation program or through the Earn-A-Bike program, which exchanged 25 volunteer hours in seven weeks or fewer for a used bike.
Many of the ReCyclery’s programs were put on pause during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the news release, the organization said it had just closed two years of negative revenues and is transforming to focus on programs and education to “empower people and enable access to services and opportunities through sustainable transportation.”
Representatives for the ReCylery could not immediately be reached for comment, but the organization has posted a public comment form online asking for feedback from the community. The ReCyclery is looking for volunteers to serve on its Board of Directors specifically in areas of grant writing and fundraising.
In 2021, the ReCyclery began a campaign aimed at raising $135,000 for renovations to its building, the organization’s first large-scale capital campaign, Peninsula Daily News reported.
According to the release, the store will have a “big sale” this Saturday and Sunday, and Dec. 13 will be the last day to drop off bikes for repair to the maintenance shop.
Reporter Peter Segall can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.