THRESHOLD SPORTS HIRED TO DEVELOP
ALBUQUERQUE BICYCLE PARK
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Mayor Martin J. Chavez of Albuquerque, New Mexico announced development of the Albuquerque Bicycle Park (ABP), a facility that will feature a world class BMX track and indoor velodrome in a sports complex near the University of New Mexico. Mayor Chavez also announced that David Chauner, President and CEO of Threshold Sports has been hired to help the City plan and develop the project.
During a press conference in Isotopes Stadium, a baseball park adjacent to the ABP site, Mayor Chavez presented the Citys vision for creating a year round high altitude training and racing center meant to attract track cyclists and BMX racers from around the United States and the world. The site is at 5200 feet and will be the nations only indoor velodrome at altitude.
"This is so directly in line with my economic development plan to have Albuquerque become a center for cycling, a sport that is very popular here," said Mayor Chavez who has been involved in the project for two years. "The governor is fully on board, legislators are on board and were stepping up and investing in our natural resources, namely the recreational and tourism attributes of our city," he said.
Mayor Chavez indicated that the City has hired Threshold to help prepare a comprehensive business plan, including analysis of the facilities and management structure to ensure world class stature and long term financial viability of the project. According to the Mayor, Threshold was hired based on the companys reputation for staging the nation's top professional cycling events and because of Chauner's key role in helping to develop Pennsylvania's Lehigh County Velodrome, recognized as the most successful outdoor velodrome program in the United States.
"In the mid-seventies, we proved that velodrome racing could be presented as entertainment as well as compelling athletic competition," said Chauner, who related how he and Olympic team coach, Jack Simes, attracted international athletes and thousands of paying spectators to watch bicycle racing where the sport was virtually unknown. "In those days, there was no Greg LeMond, no Lance Armstrong and bicycle racing wasn't on anyone's radar screen."
With cycling's visibility achieving new heights in the United States and the fact that BMX will be added to the 2008 Olympics, Mayor Chavez and Chauner believe that the ABP will set a new standard for cycling in America. The American Bicycle Association (ABA), a BMX sanctioning body with 60,000 members, will stage events at the state-of-the art covered BMX track and will help young riders prepare for international and Olympic competition. Clayton John, ABA president called the facility A boon for BMX racing across the country and a site for our top national events.
Mayor Chavez indicated that at least $10 million will be raised from city, state and private sources to fund the project. Ground breaking is expected to take place in 2005 with targeted completion in Fall 2006.
Threshold Sports is a sports marketing and event management company that focuses on the commercial development of the sports of cycling through its Pro Cycling Tour and custom-designed events and programs throughout North America. For more information visit www.thresholdsports.com or www.procyclingtour.com