The International Velodrome at Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills is about to get a much-needed facelift, thanks to a $45,000 grant from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to resurface the aging track surface.
The velodrome was funded entirely by donations and built by volunteers in 2001. It was designed by Olympic track designer Dale Hughes, a lifelong Rochester Hills resident.
“After 13 years the wood panels began to decompose, causing a rough ride for cyclists,”
Hughes says. “Using the latest in technology and installation methods, the new surface will last 20+plus years.”
The International Velodrome at Bloomer Park is the only velodrome in Michigan and draws enthusiasts from all over southeast Michigan, parts of Ohio and Canada.
Visited by hundreds of riders from ages 7 to 70 and thousands of spectators weekly during the summer season, the velodrome offers a fun atmosphere to get out and get active. Over 20 riders have qualified for the national and international championships.
The renovation will begin this spring and will consist of installing new paneling and seam sealing the track. Hughes and his team of builders from V-WorldWide, Inc. will donate the labor of their experienced staff, as well as any equipment necessary to install the new surface materials.
“This has become a world-class facility right here in our own backyard,” says Mayor Bryan Barnett. “I am truly grateful for the generosity of Dale Hughes and the volunteers who have helped build and maintain this unique community asset.”
The project is one of only 19 approved for the state grant. Recipients were chosen from a field of 82 grant applications seeking some $2.9 million in funding. Money for this fund is derived from the sale of the Michigan Recreation Passport, which replaced the resident motor vehicle sticker for state park entrance in 2010.