What’s a Velodrome?

velodrome.jpgIt’s an indoor cyclist training center. Cycling is super big around here. You know, Lance Armstrong and all. Turns out some folks want to make Austin the center of the cycling universe and lure the olympic training camp here and built a state of the art facility and dormitories and musuem in Austin. This is great, I love to see Austin receive more exciting and unique things to our city. Especially when it shoes we’re not as lazy and fat as the rest of Texas.

What I immediately noticed in the Statesman was the ‘rendering’ that showed this beautiful facility right on the banks of Town Lake
. Really? Can’t you bike inside up near the J.J. Pickle campus in North Austin? I can’t imagine I would support building such a huge facility right on parklands along Town Lake. Especially as urban density increases and we’re losing a.) park space and b.) living space down here.

I’m not the urban planner expert and everytime I post something on this y’all all have a better impression that me. So get to it. Why is this a good or bad idea? I say bad bad bad.

3 Comments so far

  1. omit (unregistered) on March 5th, 2006 @ 2:11 pm

    I’m totally with you on it being a bad idea to put the Velodrome abutting Zilker and the Hike and Bike trail. Though it’s a nonprofit group, the idea that we’re ceding prime land for its benefit just rubs me the wrong way. I already can be difficult to park at Zilker, and that land works well for parking overflow and for the operations centers for events like the ACL Festival. The other idea was to put it where the baseball fields are behind the Zachary Scott Theater. Well, what about the people who want to play baseball? There’s a secret 4th site as well–not sure why it was a secret. J.J. Pickle makes the most sense.

  2. M1EK (unregistered) on March 6th, 2006 @ 9:00 am

    It’s a bad bad bad idea. And putting it up at Pickle is dumb, too. (Don’t put tourist attractions out away from downtown where they have to get in their rental car to do anything).

    Downtown would be smart – no need for this not to be one big friggin’ building (high-rise); but these people clearly don’t have the money for that.

  3. vcSlim (unregistered) on March 6th, 2006 @ 4:03 pm

    I think it is a good idea to have a world class facility on the shores of Town Lake. It will be both a training and competition facility. It could potentials host a national and world championships.

    The site depicted on page1 is on open space for overflow parking. The facility will include a parking garage so that type of use will not be lost. I’m not sure what the loss of the ballfields on Toomey would be but aren’t their ballfields on the north shore of Town Lake plus the ballfields on Pleasant Valley, plus the ballfields on…

    Private funding is certainly the way to go and I like their idea of generating operating and maintenance costs thru leasing space.

    Austin has had an active cycling community for many years and could support this facility. Getting Lance Armstrong to support this facility will go a long way towards attracting the necessary private funding.

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