Bike Ride with Your Tribe

Bike Ride with Your Tribe

by Susan Neuhalfen

Have you ever seen an idea in another country and thought to yourself that that would be a great product to try in the US?

Denton resident Aaron Powell did just that.

The former middle school band director spent two months in Malmo, Sweden, with his wife and two young children and became engrossed in the cycling culture. Located just across the Oresund from Copenhagen, bikes are a major form of transportation there, but not like what we’re used to seeing here in the United States.

“They aren’t all decked out in athletic gear with helmets,” said Aaron. “They wear their business clothing and use their bikes for transportation, not exercise.”

A particular bike that caught Aaron’s eye was a motorized cargo bike used to sell ice cream, cart materials or just carry kids. Though the ones in Europe were not on the level of quality that he wanted, Aaron thought it would be a great idea to offer a sturdier version of the bike for families.

“It is a car replacement for my family,” said Aaron who has two children, ages 4 months and 3 years. “I can fit the kids, groceries, or whatever I need to carry.”

Despite its solid appearance, it is a very lightweight bike and easy to turn. The best feature, however, is the small motor attached that charges as easily as a laptop. It averages about 15 miles per hour, has a headlight on front and is perfect for traveling around the neighborhood or around town.

“Even my wife will use it,” said Aaron. “She’s not big on riding bikes.”

After coming back from Sweden, Aaron immediately started researching cargo bicycles in the US and found one manufacturer on the West Coast who was charging over $5,000 per bike. Having had previous experience working with factories and importers, he began researching everything it would take to make a good quality cargo bike and
found just the right combination to pull it all together.

He found the right factory, the right parts and even the right place to assemble the bikes – right in Denton. Urban Tribe just signed a lease in a new business park on Collins Road and have partnered with a bike shop in town to makes sure that every bike is assembled to Urban Tribe standards.

Urban Tribe Cargo Bicycles can now be purchased online. Ironically, one of the first orders came in from Hawaii. He is also getting a lot of attention right here as he takes the bike into downtown Denton and to local parks with his kids.

“It’s actually faster to go into the Denton Square on the bike because I don’t have to park in a space,” said Aaron. “I don’t have to trek from blocks away with kids in tow, I can park up front.”

He had one father take his four kids out to see if this was a purchase he wanted to make.

“All four kids fit perfectly on the benches and the father really enjoyed carting them around,” said Aaron. “It’s not just for sporty people, it’s for everyone.”

For Aaron, this is what he hopes to be the beginning of new era for our area.

“We want to see more bikes on the road,” he said. “When families start biking, our cities will change from the inside out.”

To learn more visit www.facebook.com/UrbanTribeCargoBicycles/ or urbantribecargobicycles.com/.


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