In 1995, three seemingly unrelated events were taking place in our neighborhood:
- Youth Express was seeking to develop a social enterprise where neighborhood youth could develop valuable skills and learn the tools of entrepreneurship.
- Liberty State Bank had reluctantly become the owner of a long-abandoned Amoco service station.
- The Minneapolis Police were seeking a better outcome for the large quantities of refurbishable bicycles that were leaving the impound lot for the scrap yard.
Fate somehow allowed these three circumstances to converge and, less than a year later, Express Bike Shop was born on the corner of Marshall Ave and Snelling Ave in St. Paul.
Fast-forward 20+ years – Express Bike Shop has collected and refurbished, re-purposed or recycled over 30,000 bicycles, over 6000 customers each year choose Express Bike Shop for their bicycle needs and over 400 young people have completed a paid bicycle shop apprenticeship.
Sometimes, exciting things happen when you connect the dots.