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Nampa Bicycle Project faces uncertain future

The director is not only looking for a new location, but her replacement as well.

BOISE, Idaho — LaRita Schandorff started the Nampa Bicycle Project in 2017 – giving hundreds of people the transportation they need.

“We take donated bicycles, we refurbish them and we give them back to people in the community that need them,” Schandorff said.

Since then, Schandorff said the nonprofit has given away about 400 bicycles. In 2021 alone, they donated 230 bikes.

“We serve those who are homeless at-risk kids, people who've gotten out of jail, people who've lost their licenses,” longtime volunteer John Courtright said.

Now, they are the ones in need – with a new building and director on the wish list. Nampa Bicycle Project currently leases building space from the Nampa School District, but not for much longer.

Part of the building Nampa Bicycle Project operates out of houses the district’s curriculum. Schandorff said other curriculum is scattered around Nampa, but that administration wants to consolidate everything into one space.

So, Schandorff said they are looking for a new location.

“It would need to be another nonprofit that maybe has some space,” Schandorff said. “The school district has said that they are continuing to look for space in their facilities if something would open up.”

Schandorff is also looking for her replacement. She started the Nampa Bicycle Project as a passion project during her retirement, but said she wants someone to take the project to the next level.

“I have been the only person in charge,” Schandorff said. “I manage the volunteers, I do the social media, I run the website, I communicate with bike requests. It's just a lot.”

She said they will continue operating out of their current space until Dec. 2. After that, the Nampa nonprofit will begin packing and moving everything to a storage unit for three or four months.

If they have not found a new location and director by then, Schandorff said Nampa Bicycle Project will close for good.

She said they are no longer accepting any community donations since they are not sure where everything will go in a few months.

There is high demand for bikes in Nampa – Schandorff said there is a waitlist. 

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