The Washington City Council gave the nod to a request by a local business seeking to open up shop downtown.

The council Monday agreed to permit a variance for Revolution Cycles to build a bicycle ramp that will encroach on city right of way on Front Street. 

Community and Economic Development Director Sal Maniaci said Joe and Katy Ferguson are renting a building at 116 Front St. where they are operating a new store that offers classes, with projected plans to have bicycles available for rent.

Maniaci explained the variance is to construct a ramp along the front of the building which will make the building more accessible to customers, as well as making it easier to enter the building with bicycles.

The council agreed to the request under the condition that if work needs to be conducted under where the ramp will be located, Revolution Cycles is required to remove the ramp at no cost to the city. The business also would be fully responsible for costs and work to reinstall the ramp.

That includes work to replace streets, curb and gutter, sidewalks, landscaping, or utilities. Removal must be done within 30 days upon request of the city.

A second condition is that a hold harmless agreement be in place that states the city is indemnified from all damages which may result from the use of the ramp.

The agreement between the city and business similar to a 2009 agreement with John G’s Bier Deck, which installed stairs on city right of way.

According to Maniaci, the Revolution Cycles would not be American with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant because the slope is too great.

He added there are no building requirements for private businesses to follow ADA standards.

New Store

In September, Joe Ferguson told The Missourian that he has been exploring this store idea for about five years while he had been searching for a place to put it. A goal is to make it easier to rent bicycles in Washington for people to ride around town, on the riverfront and Katy trail and over the new Highway 47 bridge.

The business hopes to attract leisure cyclists, those who don’t have a bicycle, and tourists getting off the Missouri River Runner train who want to rent a bicycle and have a “fun” riding day.

Ideally, the store will stay open Wednesday through Sunday for rentals, bicycle supplies and accessories, bicycle art, gifts and postcards.

Ferguson said the store will offer comfort bicycles, electric bicycles, recumbent trikes and child trailers.

The Fergusons opened Revolution Cycles June 29, 2008. That store is located at 1917 Bedford Center Drive, off Highway 100. No changes are planned for that store.

Missourian reporter Amanda Postma contributed to this article.