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Bike World Iowa sets up shop in former grocery store

Published April 30, 2018

DES MOINES, Iowa (BRAIN) — Bike World Iowa recently moved its West Des Moines location and the company’s warehouse into a former grocery store. The Ridgway family, which operates two other Des Moines-area Bike World Iowa stores, bought the building last year after the local Dahl’s chain of supermarkets went bankrupt.

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“It was a consolidation and an upgrade in a way. We had three stores and a separate warehouse,” said Forrest “Bif” Ridgway, sales manager and son of BWI founder Forrest Ridgway who started the business in 1979. “We weren’t really looking for a new space, but it made sense to buy this building when it became available.”

The Ridgways completely gutted the 25-year old building. They revamped the exterior, added a new HVAC system, and replaced all plumbing and electric, and worked with an architect to design the space. The bike shop and warehouse occupy about 30,000 square feet of the building, and the Ridgways lease the remaining space to an Ace Hardware retailer.

“We’ve been in our warehouse for decades. We did a big warehouse sale so we would have less inventory to move,” said Bif Ridgway, who has worked at Bike World Iowa since he was 13. “It was kind of like moving into a new house, and it will probably take a full year before we are completely organized.”

The new location is about 10 blocks from the shop’s former building in West Des Moines. All Bike World Iowa stores carry Trek, Giant, Liv, Waterford, Moots and Co-Motion, and the company employes about 30 people full time across three locations.

All photos: Maharry Photography

 

The shop also includes a customer lounge.

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