North students show off the prototype of their solar-powered air compressor

Congratulations to Bike Newton and President Alicia Bowman on winning a $4000 grant from PeopleforBikes to improve the bike facilities at both Newton High Schools! The grant will partially pay for the construction of covered bike parking for 45 bikes at Newton North and another 30 at Newton South, as well as bike path improvements at South.

Today there just aren’t enough spots and students regularly lock their bikes to fences, trees, posts and anything else they can find. A survey by Green Engineering students at North found that there are regularly more than 100 bikes on campus, but only 70 spots. At Newton South, there are about 60 bikes overflowing the paltry 25 spots. 

This isn’t just true of the high schools. Recently I attended the Generation Citizen at Day Middle School in which students did some research and found that the bike parking there also isn’t large enough to handle the number of bikes. 

There is still more to be done, as the $4000 doesn’t cover everything. The bike shelters will be built by the Green Engineering students and will include solar panels to power both LEDs and a bike pump. In fact, the students have already built a prototype of the pump, which was available for use today at Newton North.