If you see a disconnect between Minneapolis-mainstay
's urban locations and the company's newest store in suburban Eden Prairie, take a look at a bike map.??
A long line of trails--primarily the Midtown Greenway and its western extensions--connects the flagship store, opened in 1974, to the new Eden Prairie location at 12910 Plaza Drive near Eden Prairie Center, where a network of local bike trails weaves its way through the surrounding area. (Along the 17-mile journey, one would pass Freewheel's trailside store near the Midtown Global Market, added in 2008.)
Eden Prairie includes 125 miles of biking trails, according to a press release, and Freewheel cites both leisure and urban/suburban commuters in its decision to locate there, as well as "an overall vision that supports and promotes bicycle riding, for leisure or commuting, throughout the Twin Cities metro area."
Freewheel is celebrating the opening of the new 7,000-square-foot store with a week-long open house, through March 28, with promotions at all three locations, including 20 percent off all the merchandise you can fit in a Freewheel Bike tote bag.
Freewheel owner Kevin Ishaug will manage the new store, which will support 35 new full- and part-time employees, bringing Freewheel's total staff count to 85, according to a press release.
The pairing of Freewheel and Eden Prairie marks the marriage of national elites: Money magazine's "best place to live"
for 2010 and a Bicycle Retailer magazine "five-star retailer"--ranking in the top 100 nationwide for five straight years (along with local competitors Erik's and Penn Cycle).
In addition to its three locations, Freewheel also offers its Mobile Repair Squad and Gear Box vending machines, which offer repair kits and snack items along several Twin Cities-area bike trails.
Source: Freewheel Bike
Writer: Jeremy Stratton