Monday, October 18, 2010

Chatter About A Tampa Bay Velodrome

Manny Mirabal, owner of University Bicycle Center, forwarded this email from Christopher Pardo and Gail Clark of the Tampa Bay Velo Club.

Velodrome Coming to Tampa Bay

Would you like to see this headline? We would and we are reaching out to you for your assistance to make this happen.

We believe that the residents of Tampa Bay would benefit from a velodrome and bicycle park. Our plan is to approach our city councils with the construction of a park that would include a velodrome, criterium/time trial course, BMX track, and easy access to an area bike trail.

There are slightly over 20 velodromes in the United States . The closest one is near Ft. Lauderdale . The next closest is Atlanta . Our central location would draw participants and fans from our neighboring counties, Orlando , and Ocala .

This velodrome and park would provide a venue for professional, amateur, masters, and youth racing. These tracks would provide our universities, colleges, and clubs with a safe place to train and could promote the expansion of intercollegiate competition. The facilities could also be used for time trial training, bicycle safety training, in-line skating, wheelchair racing, and even remote control car racing. Events could compliment local triathlons and other sporting events. The velodrome in-field could be used for swap meets, parties and music events to benefit charities.

The appeal of cycling for fitness continues to draw new members. This park would introduce our youth to the sport within a safer environment than the street. Overall, the park will promote health and fitness for all ages. As cycling comfort levels grow, cycling to work becomes more of a reality having a positive impact on the environment.

To help these grassroots efforts, we are looking for feedback and recommendations.

Do you agree that our community would benefit from a velodrome and bicycle park?
Do you know individuals that would be willing to help quantify and expand community interest, estimate costs, or formalize a proposal for city council acceptance?
Do you happen to have experience in velodrome design or operations?
Do you have contacts within a local college/university that could help perform an economic impact analysis?

Below are a few links to other velodromes and parks around the county. A handful are currently in various phases of development. Colorado is on their third.

We look forward to hearing your thoughts about this endeavor. Thank you for your time.


Christopher Pardo,, 813-363-2116

Gail Clark
Tampa Bay Velo Club


Plochman said...

Yes ! Yes ! Yes ! Yes !

GhostRider said...

I'd love to see that, but first I'd rather folks concentrate on making Tampa a safer place to ride a bike. What's the point of a fancy cycling attraction if people cannot simply ride their bikes around the city safely?

And, if Tampa is successful at bidding for the Summer Olympic Games, the city will HAVE to have a velodrome -- building one in advance could improve the city's chances of scoring the Olympics.

Tampa Bay Velo Club said...

We set this up to start documenting community support to prove it's a worthy park.