Call For Models

June 27th, 2012

Can you ride a bike with confidence and a smile? We are looking for a range of models for a Bay Area photo shoot on Monday, July 2 and also for a shoot in August (date TBD). Must live in the Bay Area and be comfortable in front of a camera. If you are interested… Read more »

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Can you ride a bike with confidence and a smile? We are looking for a range of models for a Bay Area photo shoot on Monday, July 2 and also for a shoot in August (date TBD). Must live in the Bay Area and be comfortable in front of a camera. If you are interested and have availability between 9:00 am  and 7:00 pm, please send us a full body shot, your height, and 1-2 sentences about why you love bikes. Email models@publicbikes.com.

Compensation will be a $100 merchandise credit, plus coffee, snacks, and good humor during the shoot. This modeling gig is more about coming out for fun than about fame. The photos will be used on our website and possibly in a brochure, poster, or magazine.

Father’s Day Gift Guide + 15% Off Gear

June 6th, 2012

Father’s Day is just around the corner. Help your dad feel like a kid again. We put together this gift guide for dads as a handy start. Through June 17 you will receive 15% off all gear we offer. In other words, everything is 15% off except our bikes and sale items. Just place your… Read more »

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Father’s Day is just around the corner. Help your dad feel like a kid again. We put together this gift guide for dads as a handy start. Through June 17 you will receive 15% off all gear we offer. In other words, everything is 15% off except our bikes and sale items. Just place your order and use the promo code DADPICKS at the checkout.

Use promo code: DADPICKS

1. BROOKS PANNIER $240
This unique roll-up pannier was inspired by a classic commuter bag design that dates from the 1890s. Made entirely of water-resistant cotton and trimmed in leather, this roomy bag rolls up to save space when not in use.

2. PUBLIC BEDFORD $1350
British Racing Green represents national pride and signifies a heritage of top level automobiles and motorcycles: vintage British Jaquars, MGs, BSAs and the like. Its a traditional sporty color that goes well on modern bikes, like our new 8-speed PUBLIC Bedford D8, especially when combined with other classic details.

3. BRASS BELL $15
A quality bike bell with a pleasing civil tone is hard to find. Too often, they have a tinny abrasive sound. Simple and elegant, this bell is loud enough to do its job, without being obnoxious.

4. AIRKOMPRESSOR FLOOR PUMP $45
For the smoothest and safest ride, tires need an extra pump of air every couple weeks. Having a pump at home guarantees convenience and the satisfaction of an everyday pleasant ride. The new Airkompressor 12.0 Pump is an all purpose affordably priced high performance pump.

5. BERN WATTS HELMET $60
The Bern Watts Helmet has elegant minimal lines, a sophisticated European look, and superb function. Its vents and hard shell visor make it practical for all seasons.

6. TIGRA BIKE MOUNT FOR IPHONE $50
We were hesitant to offer an iPhone bike mount because we believe it is important to keep your eye on the road and your surroundings. But we also understand the convenience of having a GPS system at your fingertips. Our favorite way to travel through new cities is by bicycle and GPS comes in handy.

Special Bikes for Special Groups

May 30th, 2012

We like to find ways to work creatively with organizations that believe in our mission. It is incredibly satisfying to collaborate with companies and organizations that promote bicycling as a healthy choice for everyday transportation. We receive a lot of requests to donate a bike to a worthwhile cause like public broadcasting, community art centers,… Read more »

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We like to find ways to work creatively with organizations that believe in our mission. It is incredibly satisfying to collaborate with companies and organizations that promote bicycling as a healthy choice for everyday transportation. We receive a lot of requests to donate a bike to a worthwhile cause like public broadcasting, community art centers, and urban planning coalitions, just to name a few. While we are not in a position to give bikes away, we have found some clever and successful ways to support groups.

Our local Public Broadcasting NPR affiliate KQED is one example. We helped them raise over $170,000 for their pledge drive which featured PUBLIC bikes on Bike to Work Day two weeks ago. It was one of their most successful pledge drives. Grist, the environmental news website raised $72,000 for their membership drive featuring a PUBLIC bike. We did a similar promotion for the Sierra Club, who works to protect communities and the environment. Other organizations we’ve helped range from Streetsblog, Bike Zambia, Homeless PreNatal Program, California Bicycle Coalition, Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center, among others.

Developing special bikes for events is also fun. This month the ArtBikes auction at the San Francisco Fine Arts Fair featured PUBLIC Bikes to help raise $10,000 for our local San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. Earlier this year Creative Growth, a community art center for adults with mental and physical disabilities, auctioned a PUBLIC bike painted by artist Donald Mitchell and brought in $2,000.

We also customize large bike orders for organizations, hotels, and companies. Recently local Bay Area companies Williams-Sonoma and Mozilla, with support from our friends at Bikes Make Life Better, introduced employee bike share programs to help their employees get around more efficiently and more happily. They join a growing list of innovative, people-oriented companies that are rethinking the way their employees move between offices, corporate campuses, or around town.

If you work for a company or organization that you think should incorporate a bike fleet, read on for more information. And please do come to us with creative ideas for ways we can work together. Send us your ideas here.

A Bike for the Bridge

May 22nd, 2012

This month our favorite bridge celebrates her 75th birthday. There are many attendant festivities. Our contribution is the introduction of PUBLIC Bikes painted in the exact color and finish of the bridge (International Orange). We have a limited number of these 7-speed bikes ($750) – so, if you are interested, act quickly. It’s easy to… Read more »

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This month our favorite bridge celebrates her 75th birthday. There are many attendant festivities. Our contribution is the introduction of PUBLIC Bikes painted in the exact color and finish of the bridge (International Orange). We have a limited number of these 7-speed bikes ($750) – so, if you are interested, act quickly.

It’s easy to be a little jaded about a 75th anniversary: 50 is impressive, 100 epic. But jaded just doesn’t work with the Golden Gate Bridge; we love it so much we’d support a yearly celebration. In fact, I consider this bridge to be one of the greatest pieces of modern design – ever. Like all classic works, it just seems to grow in stature and grace every time we look at it.

What makes it so great? So many things. Astounding engineering – when completed in 1937 it was the tallest bridge in the world and the longest single-span suspension structure. Majesty – a man-made structure that holds it own even set against the dramatic natural surroundings and wonders of the bay. Beautiful design details – like the elegant ‘pyramiding’ columns. It’s heroic – reflecting our highest ambitions and speaking well of mankind. It transcends politics and brushes aside traditional design categorization. Although often billed as a triumph of the Art Deco style, its essence is too powerful, honest, and modern to be assigned to a bygone era. So purposeful, so optimistic, The Golden Gate Bridge is like a dynamic living creature, you even feel it move when you walk or ride over it.

Even with all these assets, its color might be the most defining feature. There are many stories about how its color came to be. If the US Air Force had its way the bridge would have been done up in red and white horizontal stripes (for visibility). The Navy was pushing for yellow and black. Others argued for a neutral grey to blend into the landscape. There were varying schemes to paint the railings and cables in colors contrasting the columns. But when the steel arrived with a reddish orange lead based primer in 1934 it became obvious to architect Irving F. Morrow that International Orange was the right choice.

The name of the color is also elusive. The way the light reflects off the surface gives it a somewhat indefinable patina and character. The color changes with the day and time, light, and perpetual aging and exposure to weather. More than a color the surface is like a breathing skin. A great fast paced read on the subject is Golden Gate Bridge: History and Design of an Icon, which has wonderful drawings and illustrations by Donald MacDonald that give a proper context for the bridge – purchase info below.

I was just in NYC for the ICFF show. There was a Californian Design booth and the backdrop for the booth was a huge photo of the GG Bridge.  It is perhaps the greatest symbol for California and perhaps for modernism overall given the power with which it combines form and function.

 

 

BOOK: Golden Gate Bridge: History and Design of an Icon ($16.95)
A fascinating study for those interested in architecture, design, or anyone with a soft spot for San Francisco, Golden Gate Bridge is a fitting tribute to this timeless icon. This accessible account is accompanied by 70 of MacDonald’s own charming color illustrations, making it easy to understand how the bridge was designed and constructed.

 

New Bikes and Colors for Summer

May 8th, 2012

We are fans of colors, and we have been since the outset of PUBLIC when color maven Laura Guido Clark described our palette as “lickable”. The colors that inspired this moniker include our Orange, Cream, and Powder Blue, now the signature hues for PUBLIC. But this year we’ve added several new colors to the mix… Read more »

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New Bikes and Colors for Summer
We are fans of colors, and we have been since the outset of PUBLIC when color maven Laura Guido Clark described our palette as “lickable”. The colors that inspired this moniker include our Orange, Cream, and Powder Blue, now the signature hues for PUBLIC. But this year we’ve added several new colors to the mix including Pink and Royal Blue on our PUBLIC C7 and Light Grey and Black to our PUBLIC V7. These new 2012 PUBLIC bikes will be available to ship the week of May 14 in limited quantities, so it’s wise to order early in the season. We’d certainly like you to be one of the first to ride them, and we will have samples at the Grand Opening of our Valencia Street store this weekend.

New PUBLIC Valencia Store – Grand Opening

Join us on Saturday, May 12 2-6 p.m.
We’re excited to celebrate the grand opening of our PUBLIC Valencia Store on Saturday, May 12 from 2-6pm. Please join us and invite your friends. We’ll have some special deals at the opening celebration and samples of our new colors.


Also This Week:

Mother's Day ReminderMother’s Day Reminder – Free Rack and Basket
This offer is good between now and May 14th and is worth $120. Put Mom on a roll for the season. She deserves it.

Lights Up to 20% Off
The Danger Zone taillight is the brightest bike light we offer. After the sun sets it will keep you safe and visible. The LED lights blast super bright beams through the darkness. Built to withstand rain and everyday wear and tear.

PUBLIC C7 in Pink - Featured in SF ChronicleSF Chronicle Sunday Style Features Pink PUBLIC!
The Chronicle’s Sarah Adler wrote: “Riding in skirts and high heels is no problem with the Dutch-style step-through frame C7 bike.” This is true. Also true is that we are offering Pink this year based on so many customer requests. Our new Black V7 is hot too. And we have a new orange bike to go with the big anniversary party of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Bike to Work Week on May 14-18
The official Bike to Work Week is May 14-18, but here in the Bay Area our official Bike to Work Day is this Thursday May 10. You can find plenty of “energizer stations” across the Bay Area in support of bike commuters and fun parties throughout the day.
Find info here.

Mother’s Day Special – Save $120

May 1st, 2012

Buy any PUBLIC bike between now and May 14th, and we’ll include a rear rack and picnic basket. Check out our new bike colors which include Pink, Royal Blue,Light Grey and Black. These are just arriving next week. This offer is good for any orders placed between now and May 14th even if the bikes… Read more »

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Buy any PUBLIC bike between now and May 14th, and we’ll include a rear rack and picnic basket. Check out our new bike colors which include Pink, Royal Blue,Light Grey and Black. These are just arriving next week. This offer is good for any orders placed between now and May 14th even if the bikes don’t arrive in time to ship for Mother’s Day.

Seats, helmets, and more for kids at PUBLIC.Since we launched two years ago, we’ve seen a growing trend of parents, especially mothers, buying bikes and kids seats. So many parents tell us one of the greatest joys they experience is getting to discover the world with their child on bikes. That’s why we’ve carefully expanded our  product offerings for parents and kids.

Kidical MassWe’ve also seen this trend reinforced with organized bike rides for parents such as Kidical Mass, a ride that started in Eugene but has since been replicated in other cities like Napa. Kidical Mass has a simple goal of getting more kids and families excited about bicycling.

And we’ve seen more bloggers sharing their experience riding with children. One of our favorites is Elka Karl, CasaSugar editor and PUBLIC bikes customer. Elka rides her PUBLIC bike with her child and has documented her experience in many blog posts

The other trend we’re seeing is more pregnant women riding to stay fit during early pregnancy. We’ve had expectant moms buy our bikes, particularly our step-thru PUBLIC C7 that allows them to safely get on and off easily. Here’s a good summary about bicycling during early pregnancy.

Valencia Store Grand Opening May 12th

We’re excited to celebrate the grand opening of our PUBLIC Valencia Store on Saturday, May 12 from 2-6pm. Our Valencia Store is an 8-month pop-up “store within a store” inside Harrington Galleries on 599 Valencia at 17th. We’ll also be debuting our new color 2012 bikes so come join our party and invite your friends.


Also This Week

$100 PUBLIC V3 - 3 Speed$100 OFF PUBLIC V3 – 3 SPEED INTERNAL HUB
The PUBLIC V3 is our 3-speed internal hub gear, all-purpose, lightweight steel-frame urban bike. The three gears provide plenty of range for moderate hill climbing and are ideal for flat topographies.  Comfortable enough for everyday trips for casual riders and reliable enough to be your everyday, rain or shine, commuter workhorse.

UP TO 20% OFF BAGS: BALLARD MARKET SINGLE PANNIER
This is the most versatile bag we have found. The Ballard Market Pannier was designed with city living in mind. The distinctive prints are just as beautiful as the fresh produce you’ll haul home.

Join PUBLIC in the Mission at Sunday Streets May 6th
We’ll be in front of our new Valencia Store at Valencia and 17th Streets between 11 and 4.  Ride on by and grab a cup of homemade lemonade!

Limited Edition Golden Gate Bridge International Orange PUBLIC Bike

April 27th, 2012

We’ve produced a very limited production of Golden Gate Bridge International Orange PUBLIC C7 and PUBLIC V7 bikes in celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge. These bikes will be available for sale after May 15, 2012 and will retail for $750.

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We’ve produced a very limited production of Golden Gate Bridge International Orange PUBLIC C7 and PUBLIC V7 bikes in celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge. These bikes will be available for sale after May 15, 2012 and will retail for $750.
Golden Gate-1
Golden Gate-1

SALE: PUBLIC Bikes & Lickable Public Design

April 23rd, 2012

For one week, we are offering 10% off our most popular bike model, the dutch style PUBLIC C7. The upright riding position and easy on-and-off geometry make this bike a great choice for basic transportation. Enjoy your community a little more from the vantage point of a bike. And feel like a kid again. GREAT PUBLIC… Read more »

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For one week, we are offering 10% off our most popular bike model, the dutch style PUBLIC C7. The upright riding position and easy on-and-off geometry make this bike a great choice for basic transportation. Enjoy your community a little more from the vantage point of a bike. And feel like a kid again.

GREAT PUBLIC DESIGN FROM THE US GOVERNMENT?

A friend of mine gave me a sheet of stamps last week that made me rethink the positive influence government can have in our daily lives. The “Pioneers of American Industrial Design” forever stamps feature some pretty well known designers, like Russel Wright andHenry Dreyfuss, but they also pay tribute to some designers who are not exactly household names, such as Greta von Nessen and Peter Muller-Munk. Who would have thunk it – learning about design by looking at a (not so) common postage stamp? It’s a subtle, lickable education.

Walter Dorwin TeagueThe US Government does not get much support for educating the public in the areas of art and design or related cultural activities. The National Endowment for the ArtsPublic Broadcasting and our National Parks are forced to perpetually justify themselves in their quest for their tiny share of tax dollars. When the government does (or contributes to) something big, like the Vietnam Memorial or great museums like the National Gallery and the Cooper Hewitt, we tend to take it for granted.

These stamps reminded me to think more kindly about our government, and also to send a few more personal letters. They can be a welcome oasis in the hot landscape of modern modes of communication, such as digital newsletters…

 

Going PUBLIC on Valencia Street

April 12th, 2012

If there is one neighborhood that has really come into its own in the last decade in SF it’s the Mission District. Referred to by the NY Times as a Hipster Hunting Ground it is home to the oldest standing building is SF, Mission Dolores, has some of the newest cool restaurants, and is a… Read more »

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If there is one neighborhood that has really come into its own in the last decade in SF it’s the Mission District. Referred to by the NY Times as a Hipster Hunting Ground it is home to the oldest standing building is SF, Mission Dolores, has some of the newest cool restaurants, and is a centerpiece in the city for its progressive street designs which include bike lanes on both sides of the street. The bike culture is like nowhere else in the city. The streetlights are timed to the pace of the bikes, not the cars, and there are generous bike racks all along. So we’re thrilled to be opening up a pop-up store in the classic Harrington Gallery at 17th & Valencia and thrilled to join the other great bike stores on the street: Mission Bicycle Company, Valencia Cycles, and Freewheel.
Valencia Street is known for food as much as bikes. On our one block alone you’ll find a range of destinations that includes some of the most chic cafes in the city (Bar Tartine, Locanda, and Frjtz just to name a few). Cinco de Mayo insipred iron grates around trees and legendary graffiti can be found on almost every block. With a street character and diversity that you will not find elsewhere, it’s a prefect place for us to set up shop.
We just moved in last week, and we’re still fixing the place up, but please come by and meet Dave, Justin, and Jillian or apply for a job yourself. You can test ride our bikes and check out some cool new gear such as the new Detours bike bags and Spokelit featured above. Also check out the new Nantucket Lightship Basket and new assortment of the popular Nutcase helmets. It’s worth browsing Harrington Galleries, which has an amazing range of vintage and eclectic furniture. Store hours are Monday and Tuesday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm, Wednesday closed, Thursday – Sunday 11:00 am – 7:00 pm.

BIG Thank You to Our 1st Valencia Customers
We enjoy our job most when we send a new rider off on their maiden spin. Their smiles alone make our job worthwhile. Erica, pictured on the left, spruced up her bike with one of our new Detours Panniers.  And don’t be surprised if we ask to take your picture when you stop by.

 

Chased Down in Atlanta

April 3rd, 2012

“Dear PUBLIC, Please stop making your bikes so amazing. I’ve been chased down the streets of Atlanta three times now to be questioned about my bike. One person tried to buy it from me, and by the time I finish going over how light the bike is, how easy it is to slide up hills… Read more »

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“Dear PUBLIC,
Please stop making your bikes so amazing. I’ve been chased down the streets of Atlanta three times now to be questioned about my bike. One person tried to buy it from me, and by the time I finish going over how light the bike is, how easy it is to slide up hills with the internal hub, and how simple the ready-to-ride assembly was, mixed in with complements on how stunning the bike is in person, I’m late to work. This must end. But in all seriousness, thank you for finally signing a dealer in Atlanta. Hopefully with a few more of these bikes on the road down here I’ll catch a bit of a break. Keep up the good work.”
– Tim in Atlanta

“. . . thank you for signing a dealer in Atlanta.”

We have an ever-growing list of bike shops around the country where you can jump on a PUBLIC, purchase a bike, and develop a relationship with a local bike shop for regular maintenance services. We select these stores because of their high level of service and friendly attitude.

We’re pleased to announce new dealers in Seattle, Portland, Washington DC, Atlanta, Palo Alto, Chicago, St. Louis, Cambridge, and many others. If you have a favorite local bike shop that you think should carry PUBLIC, let us know the name of the bike shop and what city. Check out our full list of dealers.

We love customer comments.

Not much pleases us more than receiving unsolicited notes and photos from our customers, like the note we recently got from Tim in Atlanta. We’re flattered, entertained and proud. It reminds us that we are succeeding in our mission to help improve our communities, put smiles on faces and create some love out there. We keep many of our customer stories on our website and photos in our office. And we’re always looking for more, so don’t be modest – send them along.