Author Topic: Velodrome  (Read 12713 times)

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Offline Sal Atticum

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Velodrome
« on: March 08, 2011, 04:01:44 pm »
Just my notes to continue the conversation we were having at the licensing party.  For anyone new to this, we were just talking about how fitting for this area it would be to have an indoor velodrome, and then how we might fit one in the Old Ralph.  It may never happen, but I wanted to keep all the dream alive.

Please share your thoughts, but if you feel like shutting this down, try to think of it as an exercise in planning and contribute in a way that you think would be most helpful toward making this happen (in other words, grap a mop).

Pros
* Pro for us: solid training through the winter.
* Pro for us: cycling team facility year-round.
* Pro for us: hosting track races means $$$.
* Pro for us: REAL solid recruitment tool.
* Pro for UND: REAL solid recruitment tool.
* Pro for UND: the only university in the country with its own indoor velodrome
* Pro for UND: they make $$$ off races too.
* Pro for UND: turn a detriment (Old Ralph going unused) into a positive (see all pros) without demolition.
* Pro for UND: rent the space out for other events (weddings, alumni parties, etc.) when no practice/races.
* Pro for Grand Forks: economic impact WIN.
* Pro for Grand Forks: another thing to do inside during the winter.
* Pro for Grand Forks: another choice of physical activity.
* Pro for Grand Forks: another sporting event to watch.

Useful facts
* There are only two indoor wooden velodromes in the United States (Carson, California and Boulder, Colorado).  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_velodromes#United_States_of_America

* There are also only two indoor velodromes in Canada (London, Ontario and Burnaby, British Columbia).  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_velodromes#Canada

It might be useful to make a Google map of all the velodrome locations, just to see how many there really are: http://www.fixedgearfever.com/modules.php?name=Velodromes&op=map

* 333 m is the standard length, but tracks can range from 250 - 500 m.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velodrome

* Did you know?  The original plan was for the wonderful rust color.  Fascinating.  Also, here is a photo of the inside.  http://siouxsports.com/hockey/history/oldengelstad.htm


To find out
* Calculate (or look up somewhere) how much area is needed for a track of various sizes.  How big a track could you fit in the Old Ralph, and how much seating could you have? See below posts.  It would be super tight.

* Business models for existing velodromes.  Do they survive on public subsidy, or use fees, or are they rented out for other events in between track practice and race times?

* Cost.  This is going to vary greatly, however I think that if we took the cost of an outdoor track (if we can fit one in the Old Ralph), it might be approximately the same (and maybe less, depending on how seating could be modified).

* What is the condition of the inside of the Old Ralph?  I can't imagine it's still pristine, I may have heard of them storing various equipment in there, even.  See below.

Alternatives
The Old Ralph could be a good fit if we had UND support and funding and a good business model (not saying we would be in charge of that, but the other half of having startup money, particularly from a benefactor, is having the ability to keep it up).  This would be an uphill battle, unfortunately, for several reasons: cycling is not an NCAA sport, so UND doesn't even recognize that it exists; both EERC and Athletics are already fighting over the future of that land (after demolition of the building); public support at the outset might be less than nil.

The simplest alternative would be the Alerus center, but I doubt this happening because putting a track in that space, while possible, would just make it awkward to have other events.  Adding on to the south side of the building would be awesome, but would add to construction costs (and they would be concerned about the loss of parking space).

The most likely alternative would be to build a new building somewhere, which would probably be outside town unless we got a really rich benefactor to buy more land along 42nd Ave (that land is notoriously overpriced, which is why developers have been avoiding it).  Being away from UND would be a drawback, but depending on the community feel for the project, it could go over well.  There are probably other possible locations in town, the old Leevers, for example, (that space is now being used) that might be large enough.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2012, 08:01:27 am by Sal Atticum »
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2011, 07:04:39 pm »
I'm gonna be going to the one in London in a couple months. It's the steepest in the US (if not the world). I think it's something like 42 degrees in the corner or something inSANE like that.
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2011, 07:05:42 pm »
Also, most velos aren't just velos. It can easily be a "recreational" space. Track, volleyball, whatever...
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Offline Mario

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2011, 10:25:00 am »
That would be fantastic if this idea materialized one day... ALl you said Beek makes sense, at least to us, but we are a bit biased.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2011, 10:25:51 am by Mario »
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2011, 11:27:21 am »
I'm gonna be going to the one in London in a couple months. It's the steepest in the US (if not the world). I think it's something like 42 degrees in the corner or something inSANE like that.
I think I would crash and burn on that, if only because I'd get up to speed and up high and then freak out.  Are you going to ride it, or are you just visiting?

Also, most velos aren't just velos. It can easily be a "recreational" space. Track, volleyball, whatever...
'Twould be sweet if, in the long run, they DID build a new sports center in that area and included a velodrome.  But they wouldn't do that unless they realized how awesome it would be, and they won't realize how awesome it would be until we show them.
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2011, 11:59:52 am »
I plan on riding it. I haven't decided about racing it yet though... since i'd need to modify my one way for track racing...
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2011, 11:56:49 am »
Chase's neighbor mentioned to him that there used to be a velodrome. I dropped a line to Marilyn Hagerty to see if she knows anything about it.
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2011, 02:36:04 pm »
omg. Grand forks. lol.
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2011, 12:55:58 pm »
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Offline Riley

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2011, 06:00:22 pm »
I know this is a little soon for this whole idea and chances are slim... but if who ever is in charge of the Old Ralph would consider it I know quite a few other collegiate cycling teams who have used this http://www.refresheverything.com/how-it-works for funding of their projects.

Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2011, 09:26:31 pm »
That's great!  Thanks Jordan!
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2011, 02:49:55 pm »
Old Ralph measurements via Google Earth: 100m length, 63m width (outside)
Alerus Arena measurements: 125m x 72m

Blaine measurements via Google Earth: 112m length, 59m width (not including stands)
http://www.nscsports.org/sports/cycling/ride/track_details.htm
250m distance around
43 degrees on turns, 15 degrees on straights

One of the two indoors tracks in Canada: http://www.burnabyvelodrome.ca/facility.php
Google Earth: 94m by 64m outside
200m around, 47 degrees! Holy buckets.
They have an inflatable roof.

Here's one in Atlanta they give the specs for:http://nadovich.com/chris/track/index.html
Measure Line Length: 250.00 m
Raceway Width: 7.2 meters
Max Banking: 42 degrees
Min Banking: 13 Degrees
Outside Dimensions: 115 x 55 meters
Infield Dimensions: 100 x 40 meters


Depending on how much junk there is in the OR, I don't know if we could fit one in there without it being scary steep.


Prices:
Screw the rest, I think this one is a good model: http://www.forestcityvelodrome.ca/track_history.php
Of course, it's still only 142 m around and has a bank of 50 degrees!
Less than $200,000, proposed, designed and built in four months!

$32 million Canadian
$40 million GBP
The one in Portland was reputedly around $500,000 (outdoors?).  An article from the planning stages.


Other:
- This guy has some ideas that sound good, but he might be a nutter, too.
- Read the rest of this thread.
- Read this too.
- Need support from as many local cyclists as possible, and those cyclists need to be affiliated with something.  It could be time (if enough effort is put forth over the summer) to revive the Grand Forks Cycling Club.
- Letters of support from clubs associated with existing velodromes (about how great the facility is) would be great to have when in the real planning stages (idea from link above).


After all that, I'm still excited for the idea but maybe it can't happen immediately.  The interim measures would be, in increasing measure of awesomeness, to 1) drive down to Blaine and train/race as much as possible this summer, 2) bring as many other people with as as we drove down to Blaine and trained/raced as much as possible, 3) --find a paved car track nearby (does Hillsboro have some sort of speedway?) and get them to let us train/race in the summer,--NM, would be too long and not banked enough, or 4) get a smaller amount of money and build an outdoor wooden track somewhere in town.

Any thoughts, discussion, or research help is welcome. 
« Last Edit: March 28, 2011, 03:53:36 pm by Sal Atticum »
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2011, 02:53:38 pm »
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kghtRevkUJA[/youtube]
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2011, 05:14:21 pm »
That mini drome was redic.

Alot of the dudes here run training races at Holland Speedway. http://hollandspeedway.com/

I haven't done it since I wasn't around... but for dimensional purposes?

The issue is going to simply lie in the "activism" of the concept. Terry is so aloof and seemingly disconnected to the cycling community that I'm not sure he would care or not care? The shop could become wholly vested in this process as they would obviously need to be the spearhead for distributing track bikes, but other than that... the town/city needs someone to "operate" the track. Building it, while a significant hurdle in terms of garnering support and such, pales in comparison to sustaining it. Especially since the track portion of it is really only useful for one thing (well... maybe rollerderby?).

WHo's going to manage it, run the races, schedule events, etc. And who's going to do this in 5 years? 10 years?

All of that said, I haven't read any of those threads you posted simply because I'm lazy, and very indirectly connected.
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2011, 10:21:40 am »
I'm sort of interested in the idea of a grass 'drome (with banked corners) but I have no idea what connections we would have to being able to get that done.  That said, the BMX club found land, so...

Who is that developer or contractor that Geiger is supposed to hook us up with?

Also, http://www.usacycling.org/news/user/story.php?id=6434
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Offline Plantains

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2011, 11:06:45 pm »
I don't think there's any way to properly use a grass drome? What about the one on the bike path?
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2011, 11:38:51 pm »
I don't think there's any way to properly use a grass drome? What about the one on the bike path?
ooooooh, we should go look at that.  You mean the holding pond by the cx course?  Might be pretty full right now, the river's up again.
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Offline Alaska Unicyclist

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #17 on: June 29, 2011, 06:50:27 pm »
I think the dude owns Construction Engineers. We should talk to him about building an indoor velo if we are going to do something! at least a large shack we can all ride around in..
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #18 on: June 29, 2011, 11:12:25 pm »
It's Craig Tweton.  So whatever he owns.  Nic says he might not throw a lot of money our way, but maybe Geiger knows him better than Nic.
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Offline Sal Atticum

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Re: Velodrome
« Reply #19 on: July 15, 2011, 06:05:50 pm »
From our friends up nord: http://mbcycling.ca/?p=3342

DC, the drome on the cx course is almost perfect!  The one thing stopping me from heading out there with a weedwhacker right now is that the incoming drainage sluice is too high up and blocks most of the slope.  I'm not sure if there is another one of those around somewhere that would be the right size but I'm keeping my eye out.
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