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E-bike business is booming in Omaha

Posted: 7:45 AM, Apr 20, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-20 12:45:14Z

When you picture pedal-assisted bikes or electric bikes, you probably don't think of them rolling around the streets of Omaha.  But, one local bike shop is changing the way Omahans get around.  

"Bikes just put a smile on your face," said Omaha Bicycle Co. Owner Sarah Johnson. 

Most of Sarah Johnson's time is spent on two-wheels.  Johnson, the Owner of Omaha Bicycle Co. in Benson rides to work on most days, no matter rain, shine or even snow.  But, an extremely painful physical condition almost put the brakes on Johnson's livelihood.  

"When your whole life revolves around something you can't do it physically, then yes, it is extremely upsetting," said Johnson. 

Her boyfriend Scott suggested she hop on an electric bike.  You still pedal, but the bike does most of the work for you.  

"I used to be under the impression you were cheating if you were riding an e-bike," said Johnson. 

It only took a test ride to sell Johnson on the idea. 

"I think I'm kind of an evangelist," said Johnson. 

Her shop started selling them about a year and a half ago. 

"We can hardly keep them in stock.  It has been so cool to watch the increase in this trend," said Johnson. 

Johnson has sold close to two dozen so far.  She recently received the "New Dealer of the Year Award" from E-bike manufacturer Blix.

"I don't sell them, they sell themselves," said Johsnon. 

After selling his car in 2014 and moving back to North Omaha, Dawaune Hayes needed something reliable and easy on the body.   

"The bus is handy, but it is really nice to just get on something and zip away," said Hayes. 

His E-bike reaches speeds of 25 miles per hour.  Omaha's hills don’t give him a problem and he doesn't worry about the cost or maintenance of a car. 

"This was $2200 and that is it.  It is mine, I own it," said Hayes. 

And if you loathe looking for parking, or paying, Hayes has a suggestion for you. 

"If you don't want to pay parking fees anymore, get a bike, especially an E-bike," said Hayes.