An Olympic-style cycling track is being assembled by a group of dedicated volunteers on a patch of scruffy, vacant land in Slavic Village where St. Michael's Hospital stood until it was demolished years ago.
The Cleveland Velodrome
met its initial $300,000 fundraising goal for the 166-meter, wood and steel banked track thanks in part to a $50,000 grant from the Cleveland Foundation and generous lead donors.
Later this month, cyclists should be able to go for a spin on the velodrome, which is the only one of its kind between the East Coast and Chicago. Backers of the project hope to eventually construct a multipurpose domed athletic center that will allow avid Cleveland cyclists and area youth to ride during the winter months, as well.
“After many years of hard work, we are thrilled to bring a velodrome track to Cleveland,” said Brett Davis, Board President or Fast Track Cycling, in a release. “Phase I allows Fast Track to implement youth and adult programming and will serve as a tool to raise additional funds to enclose the track for year-round use. While we are very pleased to reach the Phase I target, fund-raising will continue towards the ultimate goal of an enclosed, year-round track and sports center.”
“This is a terrific opportunity for Broadway Slavic Village,” said Marie Kittredge, Executive Director of Slavic Village Development. “The velodrome is a perfect fit for us, because of our central location, and our community’s commitment to active lifestyles and physical fitness. The velodrome will complement the gymnastics programming at the adjacent Sokol Czech Cultural Center, the community’s two new athletic fields, the First Tee Golf Course, and the Morgana Bike Trail.”
Fast Track Cycling is leasing the 8.4 acre site from the City of Cleveland for $1 per year. The Cleveland Velodrome is located on Broadway Ave. near Pershing Ave.
Source: Brett Davis, Marie Kittredge
Writer: Lee Chilcote