Longtime Bike Tech owner shifts gears towards retirement
Bike Tech fans, it’s time to make your last run to the retailer’s Tacoma store as a Bike Tech shop.
Earlier this year, owner Dale Carlson told The Olympian of his plans for retirement and the store coming under ownership of Trek Bicycle Corp.
“Fifty years is enough,” Carlson told The Olympian in January. “I’ve enjoyed it.”
After some delays, an email sent to customers this week notes the business handoff is in motion.
First up: Temporarily closing the Tacoma store.
Carlson told The News Tribune on Thursday that Trek plans to open a new location in Tacoma and is keeping the current Tacoma staff. He said to stay tuned for details on the new location.
“This is an important market for them,” he said, “and they will re-establish as soon as possible. They don’t intend to leave this market unserviced. We’ve built quite a business.”
The store, 5801 S. Sprague Court off Tacoma Mall Boulevard just north of 56th Street, will mark its last day of operations Tuesday (Aug. 14).
“This is the kind of business that with the customers, we become their friends,” Carlson said. “That’s one of the things I’ll miss.”
That was evident Thursday, as customers visited the store to bid farewell to Carlson. For his part, his next career move is real estate.
“I feel like in this job I enhance their lives,” he said. “Now I can help people find their next home.”
Bike Tech’s Olympia store, also sold to Trek, will remain open throughout the transition. That store is at 1931 Fourth Ave. E.
From its website, Bike Tech noted the Tacoma store “is the only bike store on Interstate 5 with freeway exposure between Canada and Oregon. It may be the only store on I-5 between Canada and Mexico. I guess we would have to drive it to know for sure.”
The site still includes a virtual tour of the Tacoma store. Carlson notes the store is having a liquidation sale on clothing of up to 80 percent off and a separate sale on its bikes.