Building Something Bike-Related In New York City Is Close To Impossible

January 10, 2013 | Bucky Turco

Despite the long and rich history of track cycling in New York, building a velodrome in any of the five boroughs is close to impossible. The plan to turn an armory in the Bronx in a bike racing facility was shot down and now a plan for multi-use sports complex with a 200 meter indoor velodrome in Brooklyn as its centerpiece is now swerving of course reports the New York Times. The organization and philanthropist behind the proposed Fieldhouse at Brooklyn Bridge Park announced they are now scouting a new location. Rich person and avid cyclist Joshua Rechnitz has pledged $40 million gift to make it happen and according to Forbes, “also committed to paying for any revenue shortfall for the first ten years so that neither New York City nor the parks department has to pay a dime.”

But apparently that’s not enough. It’s important to keep in mind, that any other progressive city in the world would have happily accepted a velodrome, let alone an entire sports complex. The bad news: The anti-bike climate in NYC is unnaturally high. The good news: NYC still has a shot at getting an Olympic spec, 250 meter track, which is what organizers behind The Fieldhouse should have been vying for from the get. Paying $40 million to get a velodrome sucks. But paying $40 million for a velodrome that’s not even suitable for world class cycling events would really suck. Rejoice track cyclists, you still have a chance of getting the bike track of your dreams.