The amazing part is that a town that small can attract the sponsors to build their project in a different state. Never said Rock Hill didn't deserve it. It does seem peculiar that a town, of even modest bicycle ranking with the resources that Charlotte has and the home-based interest group, would get 'stiffed' on a project like this. Maybe I'm not the only one of the opinion that Charlotte isn't worthy of its ranking. I came here from living there 10 years so that I could enjoy riding my bike and partake of the events and use the facilities and be part of a sizable biking community. Given that, the unfortunate part here is this city has 'lost' enough money in its sofa cushions to fund one of these. The electorate deserves better than that. I hope Cleveland's is an in-door one. They deserve that. They get a real lot of days like last Sunday.
Cleveland's is going to be inside an inflatable dome according to current plans. The track will be of the same type as a velodrome in Rochester Hills, MI, a marine grade plywood portable track built on steel substructure. The dome is a good thing as the velodrome is smack in the middle of Cleveland's snow belt. Ohio is likely a lot like other US cities in that cyclists struggle for recognition there. Cleveland once earned an "honorable mention" for its cycling efforts. Curiously the LAB ranks Ohio 37th out of 50 and North Carolina 38th out of 50. Here's what the LAB says about Charlotte: http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/bicyclefriendlyamerica/communities/bfc_charlotte.php I believe the LAB is fairly objective, and I think we both have to agree that a bronze rating is miles from platinum, gold, and even silver. Charlotte no doubt has areas in which it can improve, and even in the eyes of the LAB, Tucson is a cycling nirvana compared to Charlotte.I do agree that Tucson has likely squandered much more than what it would cost to build a velodrome, and certainly a velodrome and Tucson would seem to be a perfect fit given the cycling culture here. Unfortunately, the public doesn't see that perfect fit as much as us cyclists. For a metro as large as we have here, neither the government nor the people seem up to the task of creating a government reflective of our size and value. The same is true of the public. We certainly haven't made the most of the resources in our area.Unfortunately, I am forced to leave Arizona at the end of the month and head to Ohio. I plan on blogging about life there, particularly cycling. I expect that Tucson will appear much more rosy than it does to us here. Tucson has, after all, accomplished a lot with cycling, but with accomplishment comes the recognition that much more can be done.