fast track: can indoor bike racing rescue slavic village?
LEE CHILCOTETHURSDAY, MARCH 10, 2011
Marie Kittredge recalls firsthand when the national foreclosure crisis landed in her beloved neighborhood of Slavic Village.
"In a short period there were about a dozen empty houses on East 75th Street [off of Broadway]," says Kittredge, Executive Director of Slavic Village Development (SVD), a nonprofit community organization that serves the neighborhood.
For years, shady investors had inflated sales prices by using freshly rehabbed homes as comparables. Ironically, many of these rehabs were fixed up and sold by SVD.
"We'd sell a rehabbed home for $80,000 and they'd buy grandma's house next door for $30,000, slap a coat of paint on it, and sell it for the same price," Kittredge says. "A year later, the house would be in foreclosure."
That was back in 2007. These days, Slavic Village is digging itself out of the crater left behind by the housing market's crash. In fact, the neighborhood is enjoying green shoots of renewal -- evidenced in new urban farms, city parks, football fields and recreation trails. So much so, in fact, that Slavic Village has begun to rebrand itself as a hub for urban recreation.
The most ambitious project is a proposed $7.5 million indoor cycling track, which would be the only indoor velodrome east of the Rockies. Plans call for the recreational facility to be built at Broadway and McBride, on the former site of St. Michael's Hospital. That facility closed in 2003, and when it was subsequently torn down by the City of Cleveland, yet another vacant lot took its place. [continue reading at fresh water cleveland]
In July of 2006 a few of my friends joined me on an inaugural bike tour of West Virginia. I spent that winter planning a variety of routes through the Monongahela National Forest, and this would be our first of many weekend tours in the Mid-Atlantic Region. An early morning departure from the Pittsburgh area had us loading up the trailers high atop Spruce Knob . The starting point for this 60-mile mixed-touring loop was the Big Run/Allegheny trailhead off Route 112. Heading clockwise, we utilized forest roads, rail-trails, and paved roads. The reality of pulling our belongings behind us set in as we headed down the dusty and rolling forest road, quickly understanding why West Virginia is known as "The Mountain State." Soon we were treated to one of many mountain vistas. After rolling onto pavement (Route 28), we climbed over Allegheny Mountain and coasted into our campsite for the evening -- Island Campground , situated on the banks of the East Fork of the Greenbrier
have had some very fun excursions on rail trails , disused railways turned into pedestrian/bike paths. The trails typically go through very beautiful areas and rarely do you have to concern yourself with motorized traffic of any kind. Reader Will appears to be interested in rails as well, but he wants to ride on them - literally. Check it out - Will included the following text - A rail-bike is a bicycle that has been modified to be able to ride on the rails of a railroad. The front wheel has a device attached to it so that the bike won’t steer off the rail while an outrigger is used to support the bike using the other rail. I used conduit, cut up “razor” scooters parts, one bike fork two bits of steel and numerous nuts, bolts, washers and retaining pins. Nothing is welded. The hardest part is getting the spacing right so that friction and play are minimized. A lot of person hours certainly went in to this working model and the details are pretty amazing. [Keep re