River Bend Bike Park in the News

Posted by on Sep 15, 2012 in bike park, bmx, mountain bike, Slider, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Here is an excerpt from the Santa Barbara News Press and The Lompoc Record about our bike park.

The Riverbend Bike Park Committee scaled another hurdle when the Lompoc City Council supported the committee’s vision of developing a portion of the northeast end of Riverbend Park into a drop-in bicycle skills park for free public use.

Brainstorming on a park design could take place as soon as two weeks; there is no completion date set for the park. A memorandum of understanding between the city and the committee must be signed, outlining terms and responsibilities.

Lompoc resident Dave Baker explained the plans for the BMX Skills Park to the council Tuesday in front of a large delegation of committee supporters.

In appearance, the park wouldn’t be anything elaborate — the fenced-in complex would include An off-road track as well as ramps, hills and berms made from compacted dirt, which would allow for free-style tricks that have been popularized by televised competition such as the X Games and Gravity Games.

The facility would be designed and built for bicyclists at beginner, intermediate, and advance levels. Separate tracks would be built for mountain bikers and small children.

“It is a positive youth and family experience and built for all ages and skill levels in mind,” said Baker, who said he was spearheading the project for the communiyt’s children, including his own.

A half dozen members from the committee spoke warmly about creating a park where Lompoc children could have a healthy and fun time.

“It allows kids to go places and have a good time and keep them out of trouble,” said Judy Taggart, of the Lompoc Valley Community Healthcare Organization.

She “wholeheartedly” endorsed the project and said that children in Lompoc have the highest obesity rate of any city in Santa Barbara County.

“It keeps kids from riding where they are not supposed to, but allows kids and family to engage in a healthy activity,” Taggart said.

“I have five kids,” Lompoc resident Melissa Mastella said. “I am bored (in Lompoc) and biking makes a big difference in my life.”

Baker said the project potentially has 200 volunteers ready to build the park, and 600 people on Facebook that receive updates.

Baker described a schedule where extensive planning would take place in the next two months. The committee intends to have a Master Plan approved by Oct. 2.

Sponsors are being sought, Baker said. Interested businesses and organizations can email: riverbendbikepark@gmail.com.

Councilmember Ashley Costa asked about security around that area at Riverbend Park, and Recreation Manager JoAnne Plummer said that the Lompoc Police Department routinely patrol the area.

Councilmember Cecilia Martner asked what concerns have been raised from community members, and Plummer said that there have been questions about the noise level — but the area is deemed for recreational use, so noise would arise in any case.

Neighbors in the area also expressed concern that bicyclists would walk onto their property.

Councilmember Dirk Starbuck asked if tournaments could be hosted at the skills parks in the future, and Baker said that was a possibility, although that wasn’t the committee’s focus.

“You’ve got community engagement and you’re building community pride,” Starbuck said before voting with the rest of council to support the project.

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