Judging by the attention they get, it would seem that figuring how to hang a bike on the wall is one of the great urban challenges of our time. In Western Canada, another challenge is what to do with all the wood from trees killed by the mountain pine beetle.
The beetle kills by releasing a blue fungus “into the sapwood that prevents the tree from repelling and killing the attacking beetles with tree pitch flow. The fungus also blocks water and nutrient transport within the tree.” (WP) But the wood is still good for a couple of years and can be used like normal wood, if you don’t mind the blue stain. People have been trying to make a virtue out of it for years (Denim Pine, anyone?) and now Gleb Vaguine and Pierre Lai are calling it Killwood, which is certainly a literal, bold new approach.
They have just launched Bika, another way to hang your bike on the wall, that is made out of solid Killwood. There are not enough bikes in all of Cascadia to make a dent in the 45 million acres of wood out there, but it’s a statement. Those trees, if left to rot, will release 30 billion pounds of CO2, so that it’s nice that it's a bike rack, supporting the best mode of transportation for reducing your carbon footprint.
Inspired by the minimalism of Japanese and contemporary design, Bika embraces nature while providing function to your every day. Gorgeous, uninterrupted surfaces emphasize the beauty of exotic pine beetle kill wood, telling a story of devastation and rebirth.
It’s a practical design, with a magnet to hold your keys and a shelf for your books or helmet. It uses up fifteen pounds of wood and is to my eye, a bit clunkier than some of the other designs we have shown, but it is really solid and strong, tested up to 120 pounds capacity.
It’s up on Kickstarter now for C$ 350, (US $ 269 and falling) but for 10 loonies (about a large latte) they will plant a tree and call you a TreeHugger. We like that.