Bicycling for affordable housing

Group leader Gregory Powell, of Philadelphia, Penn. with the support van for the Bike and Build ride Photo available for purchase

Group leader Gregory Powell, of Philadelphia, Penn. with the support van for the Bike and Build riders.

Lois Swoboda
Published: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 11:53 AM.

This weekend, Franklin County was visited by 32 energetic activists.

For the third consecutive year, Bike and Build wheeled in on US 98 and made an overnight stop at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Apalachicola .

Sister Jeanne Drea said she received the first inquiry from the group by telephone in 2011. “They called and asked, ‘Do you have showers?’ and I said ‘No, but we have a hose,’” she said.

On Sunday evening, the cyclists were treated to a low-country boil for supper and slept on mats on the floor of the parish hall.

Since 2003, Bike and Build has contributed around $5 million to housing groups to fund affordable housing projects planned and executed by almost 1,500 young adults. Riders alternate days of riding and construction.

Riders on the southern route start in Jacksonville and wind up in Monterey , California . On travel days, the group bikes around 60 miles. The bikers traveled from here to Panama City and then to Defuniak Springs.

The group will be on the road for two-and-a-half months.



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