Vancouver's Flat Fix Bike Shop aims to keep cycling affordable

Nov 3 2021, 9:27 pm

Made in Vancouver is a collaboration between Vancity and Daily Hive. Together, we’re turning the spotlight onto local businesses, organizations, and individuals who are helping to create a healthy local economy.

Based just off the Central Valley Greenway in Vancouver, Flat Fix Bike Shop keeps you rolling by revamping or fixing up your old bicycle.

Vancity has been supporting people in our communities since 1946. As part of our Made in Vancouver series spotlighting local businesses, we talked to Flat Fix Bike Shop’s owner, Andrea Smith, and manager, Kiefer Blackburn, about their shop and what makes them the best. Learn more about what Vancity is doing in your community at

Andrea Smith, the owner of Flat Fix Bike Shop, knows that cycling is an expensive sport. Because of this, she decided to open her own bike shop which aims to make cycling as affordable as possible.

Flat Fix was initially started as an experiment, to see if it was possible to keep prices affordable while still providing good local jobs. 

Back in its opening days of 2020, the shop offered flat-rate repairs for $100, which allowed the bike mechanics to do as much as they could to improve a bike’s rideability. Smith soon realized that even customers on a budget preferred personalized repair plans, so the shop now offers à la carte services starting at just $12, in addition to multiple flat-rate options. 

The neighbourhood bike shop serves everyday riders, offering repairs and upgrades as well as selling bikes, parts, and accessories. They specialize in affordable, quality bikes from $700 to $1500, as well as select models and custom builds at a higher price range.

The team also has a special flair for lovingly rebuilding bikes from the 80s, 90s, and 00s — Smith and Blackburn explained to Daily Hive that “underneath the dust and cracked tires, your high school bike could have the still-beating heart of a wild stallion!”

Smith and Blackburn welcome everyone into their shop and actively try to create a space where people can be themselves. They attribute their success to a bit of luck as well as a talented and dedicated staff team and a neighbourhood that values bikes and small business.

“Bike shops have been very lucky through the pandemic because we were allowed to stay open,” explained Smith and Blackburn. “People turned to biking as a safe and enjoyable activity when not much else was allowed. So we are grateful and feel fortunate.”

Just because people are biking more, doesn’t mean that dealing with pandemic crowds has been easy.

“It saddens me to say that the hardest thing about COVID has been how volatile the general public has become… what we [staff and customers] all have in common is that we are all very stressed out. We’ve had a lot of customers take this stress out on our staff who are empowered to set boundaries when faced with inappropriate behaviour, but it takes a toll on them. Boundary-setting also often results in a negative online review within the hour, which is discouraging.”

Flat Fix does as much as it can to accommodate the needs of all customers and puts their all into each and every bike that comes through the shop.

Keep up with the bike shop on Instagram, or roll in your ride Tuesday through Sunday at 2496 Victoria Drive in Vancouver.

Daily Hive

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Alyssa TherrienAlyssa Therrien

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