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Cam McCaul talks about designing San Francisco’s first bike park

December 22, 2014
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Cam McCaul is working with Alpine Bike Parks to bring a world-class bike park to San Francisco

The natural slope, rocks and amount of space approved for McLaren Bike Park are appealing to designers like Alpine Bike Parks as they provide a great canvas to integrate man-made features like jumps and ladders into the riding experience. Alpine has enlisted professional riders like Cam to help plan the the location of the features in the park to maximize the space and flow.

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The project is currently in conceptual design phase which has been fully funded through Founders Club donations and grants from the Hellman Foundation and Mr. And Mrs. Caroline Gretsch. The next phase of design, which consists primarily of creating construction documents, begins in late April and will require an additional $50,000 in funding.

We need your help if we want to keep the project on schedule and be riding Phase 1 in 2016! Please donate here!

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Half a Million Dollars and Counting!

November 26, 2013

It’s been an amazing year so far for McLaren Bike Park. In January we learned we’d won the Community Opportunity Fund Grant for $249,835 to fund phase 1 of the MBP Project. This was our first major grant award and gave us some much needed momentum heading into the new year and other grant opportunities.

The COF Grant made us eligible for other grants, so shortly thereafter, we worked with SFRPD and Alpine Bike Parks to apply for a matching grant from The Land and Water Conservation Fund. The LWCF Program provides matching grants to States and local governments for the acquisition and development of public outdoor recreation areas.

In July we were awarded an LWCF grant for $249,835, bringing our total funds raised to almost half a million dollars!!! This allows us to expand the scope of phase 1 to include more than the originally proposed pumptrack. What phase 1 will include is still being discussed. If more funds are secured, more can be added to its scope.

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Adding to the momentum, in September, over 300 racers participated in the McLaren Short Track Challenge at the SF Mountain Bike Festival where SFUR raised over $5000 for McLaren Bike Park. This event will be the premiere SFUR fundraising event each year, and will continue to grow and draw racers and bike lovers from all over the west coast.

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Be on the lookout for a Kickstarter or Indie Go-Go campaign to raise up to another $100,000 for the project. Currently, the main hurdle is funding the completion of full construction documents for the project. The COF and LCWF grants can only be used for Construction costs and cannot be used for design and planning. So, to unlock those funds, we need to fund the final design process. In our estimation, this will cost from $75,000 to $100,000.

If we raise funds for the Construction documents by May of 2014, it’s likely the design development process could take the remainder of 2014 and we’d be breaking ground early in 2015. This seems like an eternity from now, but only a drop in the bucket when you consider SFUR has been working at this for almost five years!!!

In addition to the Kickstarter campaign, we’re working with SFRPD to identify other grant opportunities, and refine the first phase of the project. If you have a background in fundraising or grantwriting and want to help, give me a shout at dustin@sfurbanriders.org

If you’re interested in contributing personally, please contribute to the Founders Club. If you’re in a position to help with an industry Founder’s donation, please jump on board, or point those industry folks our way. COF grant funding must be put to work by January 2015 or SFUR will forfeit the grant funds and any other funding that was leveraged from its foundation… as it has a 24-month time frame. That time will fly by so we need to get our motor into drive mode!

MBP Wins COF Grant for $250,000!!!

January 16, 2013

For over four years, we’ve been building trails, selling t-shirts, getting kids on bikes, supporting neighborhood gatherings, going to meetings, meeting with important people. Some things are clearly visible, but a lot happens behind the scenes. It’s been awhile since we’ve had some big, public news about MBP. But, it’s been well worth the wait, and all the time we’ve invested has paid off. We’re about to build a bike park!!!

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Renderings and photos courtesy of Alpine Bike Parks, LLC

With the help of Alpine Bike Parks and funded by the MBP Founder’s Club, The SF Urban Riders Bike Park Committee wrote and submitted a Community Opportunity Fund grant application at the end of June. The awards were to be announced in September. Groups usually submit applications for this grant multiple times before winning, and this was our second time. In September we were notified that the selection committee was a few people short, and that selections would be delayed until the end of the year. SFUR has been working diligently toward a bike park for over four years, we’ve been fully vested in the surrounding community, and knew this year we had a strong application. So, we’ve been waiting very patiently, yet anxiously, until now…

On January 9th, I received a surprise call from Phil Ginsberg, General Manager of SF Recreation and Park Department, congratulating SF Urban Riders and McLaren Bike Park on receiving the COF grant. And the next day, we received an email from Jacob Gilchrist, Project Manager with SF Recreation and Park with the list of winning projects.

The Community Opportunity Fund Project Selection Committee had made its recommendations to the Recreation and Park Commission for the award of Round 3 projects. They received over $3.5 million in requests and had just $1.25 million available for award. So, we are incredibly fortunate to have won the second largest grant in the group at $249,835.

The winning projects will be presented at the Recreation and Park Commission Capital Committee Meeting on February 6. Assuming Capital Committee approval, the full Commission would take final action on February 21.

Here’s a project Summary from our McLaren Bike Park COF Grant application:

San
 Francisco
 Urban
 Riders
 is
 proposing
 the
 design
 and
 installation
 of
 a
 youth‐focused
 bike
 park
 in
 a
 vacant
 area 
of 
McLaren
 Park.

This 
proposed
 project
 is 
the 
first
 phase 
of 
a 
larger
 bicycle
 park 
as 
shown
 on
 the
 attached
 conceptual
 master
 plan
 that
 has
 been
 approved
 by
 SFRPD
 following
 the
 community
 design 
meeting 
process.
This
 shovel 
ready
 project
 will
 create 
a
 facility 
for 
individuals
 looking
 to
 learn 
or
 improve
 their
 basic
 bike
 riding
 skills,
 and
 aesthetically
 pleasing
 passive
 areas
 for
 parents
 and
 other
 constituents.
 The
 project
 will
 create
 an
 engaging
 and
 innovative
 park
 amenity
 that
 resonates
 with
 teenagers, 
many 
of
 whom 
are
 underserved 
and
 at
 risk.

Supported
 by
 neighborhood
 community
 groups
 and
 the
 cycling
 community,
 the
 park
 will
 fill
 a
 demonstrated
 need
 in
 the
 community.
 
 
 The
 park
 will
 provide
 an
 accessible
 and
 dedicated
 space
 for
 cyclists 
to 
improve
 their 
skills, 
while 
providing 
a
 safe 
area 
for
 the 
community
 to 
passively
 participate.

The completed project will be broken down into approximately three phases. The COF grant will fund the first phase, which includes:

MBP_Phase1_siteplan_r2

Subsequent phases will be funded by additional grants and fundraising projects. SF Urban Riders and Alpine Bike Parks are already partnering with SFRPD to secure additional fundraising. There’s still much work to be done, but the COF grant is the first domino to fall, and will help immensely in securing more funding.

Next steps?

  • January TBD – Come celebrate the awarding of the COF grant, ask questions, and find out how you can get involved. Look for meeting date, location and time to be announced shortly.
  • January 26 –  Come lend a hand improving trails in McLaren Park. Click here for more info.
  • February TBD – Come out to the SFRPD Commission meeting and show your support for McLaren Bike Park and the COF grant award.
  • March 30 – Participate, volunteer or spectate in the San Francisco Mountain Bike Festival Fundraiser on March 30th in McLaren Park. Click here for more info.

We’re also making one last push for Founder’s Club donations. This is the time to support future grant writing, so donate! We’re making this park happen and founders will have their name attached to the park. But, space is limited to 20 Industry founders. 20 Bike Shop founders and 50 individual founders. So donate now, and encourage your biking friends to do the same. This is especially huge for industry and bike shop folks. Once the park is near completion, sponsorship will be less affordable. This is a chance to put your name on the park, show you supported it from the beginning, and help fund the next phases of construction asap!!!

Huge thanks to everyone at the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, The COF Selection Committee, and our fiscal host, SF Parks Alliance. Thanks to all the community organizations and supporters that came out for meetings, wrote letters, bought t-shirts and rallied for the cause.

Big props to Industry founders Gamut USA, Custom SLR and Ride SFO. Our non-profit founders, the Mary A. Crocker Trust and the Matt Peterson Fund. And to all of our individual founders. Thanks to Dan Schneider, SF Urban Riders Executive Director, Tom Borden my Co-project manager. Thanks to Alpine Bike Parks for putting time against this, even when they didn’t know if they’d get paid. And to everyone that’s come to a meeting, picked up a shovel, written a letter, bought a shirt, or voiced their support for the park. Lets keep it going!!!

Dustin Smith
McLaren Bike Park Project Manager
SF Urban Riders Board Member

Support MBP! Become a Founder!

December 5, 2011

After over three years of community outreach culminating in the recent community design process where SF Urban Riders partnered with Alpine Bike Parks and SF Recreation and Parks, it’s looking like McLaren Bike Park is going to happen. But… to take it to the next level, we need to pay for the design phase of the project, show that we can raise money, and prove that people actually want a bike park. This will help us apply for larger grants and ultimately fund the entire MBP Project.

For those individuals that want a bike park, this is the chance to show your support. Maybe you haven’t made all the meetings. Or, maybe you haven’t been out to all of our events. Well, now there’s a great way to show your support and let everyone know that “Cyclists in San Francisco want McLaren Bike Park!”. Become an MBP Founder!!!

Bike Industry folks… Show the community how much you support off-road cycling in San Francisco by becoming an MBP Founder, and lay claim to getting San Francisco’s first bike rolling. Here are the details:

Individual Founders

What you give: Tax deductible donation of $100 or more.

What you get:

  • Thanks and bragging rights! You helped get the bike park started.
  • An MBP Founders facebook badge.
  • Your name on the MBP website.
  • Ultimately have your logo/name visibly ackowledged at McLaren Bike Park.
  • Did we mention you get a free t-shirt?

Bike Shop Founders

What you give: Tax deductible donation of $300 or more.

What you get:

  • Thanks and bragging rights! You helped get the bike park started.
  • An MBP Founders badge for your website and facebook page.
  • Your shop name on the MBP website.
  • Ultimately have your shop name visibly ackowledged at McLaren Bike Park.
  • 2 MBP T-shirts.

Industry Founders

What you give : Tax deductible donation of $1000 or more.

What you get:

  • Thanks and bragging rights! You helped get the bike park started.
  • An MBP Founders badge for your website and facebook page.
  • Your company name and logo placed on the MBP website.
  • Ultimately have your company name physically acknowledged at McLaren Bike Park.
  • 5 MBP t-shirts.

Here’s the fine print:

Click here to make your tax deductible donation.

Shortly thereafter, you’ll be added to the founders list here.

If you want to pay by check, please make them out to SF Parks Alliance, and note SF Urban Riders / McLaren Bike Park Founders Club. Mail to: SF Urban Riders c/o Dustin Smith, 221 Warren Dr., San Francisco, CA 94131. Or if you’re in the bay area, email me, and I’ll come pick ‘em up! Click here for the form to donate by check.

75% goes directly to McLaren Bike Park Design and Development. 20% to the SF Urban Riders general fund for operating costs and youth programs. 5% to SF Parks Alliance, SFUR’s non-profit fiscal host.

For more info contact dustin@sfurbanriders.org.

Thanks for your support!!!

What you could be riding!!!

November 13, 2011

Earlier this year, we contracted Alpine Bike Parks to work with us and the community to create a concept design to take through SFRPD Commission approval. The plan has met with much community support and is supported by SF Recreation and Parks as well. In fact, they have paid staff dedicated specifically to making MBP a reality. Check out the rendering below to see what you could be riding in the city of San Francisco! Please support McLaren Bike Park by becoming an MBP Founder!

MBP Rendering Created by Alpine Bike Parks LLC, Whistler, B.C.


MBP Conceptual Design

November 6, 2011

Last month, we wrapped up the Community Design process with Community Design Meeting #3. We hosted the meeting with SFRPD and our bike park designer, Alpine Bike Parks. The community has been overwhelmingly supportive of the project and of the concept design. This is still a work in progress, but much time has been put into community outreach and gathering and implementing community input. Here’s the current concept plan as it stands… Next step? Fundraising.

Community Design Mtg #3 – Sept 24th!!!

August 31, 2011

Mark your Calendars. There’s a lot happening on September 24th.

In conjunction with National Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day, locally organized by SF Urban Riders, we’ll be holding the third and final Community Design Meeting. In the first two meetings we gathered community input and created a Conceptual Plan to take to the SF Recreation and Parks Commission in October. The third meeting will be a final chance for cyclists and the community the view the plan, make suggestions and rally around the cause. If you want a bike park, WE NEED YOU to come support it in this meeting.

There’ll be refreshments on hand, a raffle for T-shirts and some big sur-prizes.

Location:

Multi Purpose Room – HERZ PLAYGROUND
1700 Visitacion Ave @ Hahn St
San Francisco  
CA, 94134

Click here for a map

Time:

2:00 – 3:30 pm

If you have kids and want them to experience mountain biking in McLaren Park, come out to Take a Kid Mountain biking Day from 9am – 2pm. Meet in the Eastern Parking Lot at intersection of Mansell St and Visitacion Ave. Click here for more details.

If you attend Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day, We’ll head over to Herz Playground together for the meeting just before 2pm.

Check back soon for more details…

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