Florida State Offers Recycled Bikes for a Bargain

Florida State University reCycle Bike Program

One of the bikes for rent through FSU's refurbished bike rental program. Photo: FSU reCycle Bike Program

College students are always looking for ways to cut costs and Florida State University offers an inexpensive and eco-friendly way for students to get around.

The FSU reCycle Bike Program offers refurbished bikes to students for rent at prices much lower than that of purchasing a bike. For $25, you can rent one of the recycled bikes for a semester and $40 will make it yours for an entire year.

The program provides a sustainable and healthy alternative to driving. But most students really enjoy the affordability factor, according to student coordinator Mark Kastner.

“That’s what a lot of people like – that they can save money,” Kastner said.

This fall, FSU reCycle will have 45 bikes for rent on distribution day. There is no way to reserve a bike ahead of time, but Kastner says his inbox is already filling up with requests.

“It’s first come, first served, but people are already emailing me asking how they can get a bike,” he said.

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Some of the bikes used in the program are donated by students, but most are collected by the FSU police department after they are abandoned on campus. After being tagged by FSU PD, if the bikes are not claimed by original owners within a certain period of time, they become free game. FSU reCycle makes all the necessary repairs to get them ready for the upcoming semester.

The program, heading into its third year, was created by former FSU student Sandy Simmons in the fall of 2010. Kastner took the reins this summer after Simmons graduated. Kastner originally became interested in the program as a customer. He rented a bike during his first semester at FSU.

“I had always been interested in sustainability and recycling,” he said. “So I had to support the program, even if I didn’t end up using the bike.”

But just like most of FSU reCycle’s clients, Kastner said, that wasn’t the case at all.

“My bike became my best friend,” he said.

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