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Thread: Indoor MTB park

  1. #1
    Wandervans
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    Indoor MTB park

    Well I had been thinking about doing an indoor mountain bike park for a while but was unsure how to bring it all toegther and how it would work. Until jubilee directed me to this site for this guy in cleveland. Here is his place http://www.raysmtb.com/

    I think it would be great for Boise and would be popular but maybe I am wrong, thoughts?

    I am in search of a building so if anyone sees a nice big warehouse or vacant space in a shopping plaza let me know. I am working out some of the financials now and seeing how cheap I need to get the building and the supplies for it to make it work. Open it for winter time and then have some competetions at it also.

    Chris
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  2. #2
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    I read about the Cleveland outfit in last months Dirt Rag and also thought what a great idea! But, I'm not sure how successful it would be here. Remember, Cleveland has brutal winters with a dearth of wintertime outdoor activities whereas our winters are a lot milder and lots of folks round here head into the mountains for skiing/boarding/'biling and that type of stuff. There might be also be problems associated with luring folks indoors in the summer and paying huge AC bills for a warehouse-type design. I would definitely come visit during rainy/muddy times, but otherwise you would probably find me somewhere else.

    Just one man's opinion,

    Adam

  3. #3
    Barneys Unite!
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    The former K-Mart building

    on Apple and Parkcenter is still sitting empty.

    Nice and close to my house, too.

  4. #4
    Politically Incorrect
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    Since it seems we can't build a skill park anywhere in the foothills, this could be an alternative. Some of the pictures I have seen of the park in Ohio show stuff that would be good to learn or brush up on technical skills.

    I do agree with AdamW that our comparatively mild winters, where you are still able to get out and ride occasionally might make it hard to lure people to ride indoors. I would think one of the biggest challenges would be to find a entry price low enough for people to come frequently, yet still make enough money to cover the rent.

  5. #5
    Hi!!!
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    What about the Boise Bike Swap space? But do building owners rent out space for just partial periods?

    Is that building at the intersection of Glenwood and Chinden still available (it use to be a grocery store)?

    Heck...give Boise Peak Fitness (the new climbing gym) about a year...you'll be able to snatch that space up I bet.

    Speaking of....

    I agree with AdamW's post. I've worked and climbed at a number of climbing gyms around town. Late fall/winter/early spring is usually when those are busy. Come nice weather...those places are practically deserted. That is what I would equate an indoor MTB facility with. It'd be a good place to hang out in when the weather was terrible, but with the number of outdoor opportunities available to us in the winter, I just think that it would be a very hard sell in this valley.

    Another thing to consider is that alot of folks around here bristle at paying to play inside. When I was telling folks of the cost of a day pass to climb at the new gym ($12...doesn't include gear rental), they just couldn't justify it and thought it was absurb. Knock that down to something around $5 or less and it's alot more palatable. It must be noted that this valley is not as rich as some people may think...you have pockets of money here and there, but it's not widespread...that's one of the reasons our store pulls in alot less each year compared to comparable stores our size in say NorCal or Denver.

  6. #6
    That's my name
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilycook
    Here is his place http://www.raysmtb.com/
    I think it would be great for Boise and would be popular but maybe I am wrong, thoughts
    Dude, that place is BRILLIANT!!!!
    Do everything you can to make yours happen, there should be a whole stack of those joints around and you are right when you said they would be popular!!
    I still cant believe how cool that was!

  7. #7
    ride your bike
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilycook
    Well I had been thinking about doing an indoor mountain bike park for a while but was unsure how to bring it all toegther and how it would work. Until jubilee directed me to this site for this guy in cleveland. Here is his place http://www.raysmtb.com/

    I think it would be great for Boise and would be popular but maybe I am wrong, thoughts?

    I am in search of a building so if anyone sees a nice big warehouse or vacant space in a shopping plaza let me know. I am working out some of the financials now and seeing how cheap I need to get the building and the supplies for it to make it work. Open it for winter time and then have some competetions at it also.

    Chris
    Thanks for the mention. That, and more, is my dream. A glass-walled shop in the corner, a sound system, hot dogs and pizza, sodas and water, couches to lounge on, a TV with continuous bike vids.... The possibilities are endless. Unfortunately I have a new business on my hands to tend to as it is! But I am shooting for the moon on a community biking complex. I will keep eberyone updated on progress with the city and parks/rec...or lack thereof.
    Taking it easy for all you sinners.

  8. #8
    That's my name
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    Quote Originally Posted by jubilee
    Thanks for the mention. That, and more, is my dream. A glass-walled shop in the corner, a sound system, hot dogs and pizza, sodas and water, couches to lounge on, a TV with continuous bike vids.... The possibilities are endless.

    I would support you 100% if i lived in the US (did i assume right?), i'd ride as often as my circumstances would allow! Props for keeping the dream alive!!!

  9. #9
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    Hi Chris, I've been thinking about an indoor park too. Of course here in McCall the winters are much harder and longer than Boise's. Especially this time of year, I'm jonesin' to ride. If you find a location with enough room, you should probably consider making a skatepark/bmx area to expand your clientbase. If it has big roll-up doors you can probably get by without AC.

  10. #10
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    slightly OT, the climbing gym

    Funny and interesting. Mind sharing your thoughts on why you think the indoor climbing gym will flop? Don't mean to hijack this thread but it is somewhat related what with being an indoor alternative to the great outdoors.



    Quote Originally Posted by BelaySlave
    Heck...give Boise Peak Fitness (the new climbing gym) about a year...you'll be able to snatch that space up I bet.

  11. #11
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    That would be insane!

    I was thinking of "proposing" that to you. We are a Pacific NW state, it seems fitting we should have one

    The financing, insuring, etc and whatever else the City of Boise would want to know all hard questions. The one in Ohio would be a good case study to answer some of these, get prepared.

    Run with it

  12. #12
    Hi!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by danK
    Funny and interesting. Mind sharing your thoughts on why you think the indoor climbing gym will flop? Don't mean to hijack this thread but it is somewhat related what with being an indoor alternative to the great outdoors.
    Maybe "flop" is too strong of a word and I admit I was being a smartass in my original post. Do I want the new gym to succeed? Of course I do, but I just think it's going to be a hard sell in this valley. Climbing gyms in other locales do very well. From my experience as both a climber and climbing wall employee...I just see it struggling after the "HOLY COW THIS PLACE IS HUGE!!!" factor wears off and Mother Nature decides to calm down.

    I started climbing over 10 years ago at the old BSU climbing gym when I was a freshman/sophomore there. During the bad weather/no daylight after 5pm months, we'd congregate in the gym for several hours and that place would always be busy. But as soon as it started getting nice outside, everyone wanted to be at the Black Cliffs or the very least Table Rock. This was also the case for the Nampa Rec Center and Wings as well as the year old new BSU climbing gym.

    I use to work both the Downtown YMCA climbing wall and West Family YMCA climbing wall and it was the same thing...busy from late fall to early spring and dead after that. Right now I'm in limbo with the REI wall (we're suppose to tear it down soon)...but I've been doing that for 7+ years and the same pattern exists (yeah yeah I know our wall ain't a real gym).

    Climbers in Boise are spoiled by our pretty mild weather and the proximity of climbing areas like the Black Cliffs and Table Rock.

    I think the other factor that will deter folks after a while is the cost. An adult day pass is $12 ($8 for school age kids I think) and full gear rental another $5. We're free. The YMCA's and Nampa are about $10 less total. Wings is weird in that you now have to reserve the gym instead of just walking in...one of the parents told me it was like $5/climber and I don't know if they had a minimum. BSU's wall is mainly only open to rec members, but we can bring in a guest for $5 and if you don't know a BSU rec member, it's pretty easy to find someone to "sponsor" you so that you can get in. Please note that I've only discussed day use fees, Boise Peak Fitness does offer monthly memberships.

    $12 may not seem alot to folks here that spend several grand on a MTB, but most of the climbers I knew were friggin' cheap ass dirtbags. I think $5-$7 is reasonable for what we had prior to Boise Peak Fitness entering the picture, but I just have a hard time seeing the folks I know fork over $12 on a regular basis. Maybe a couple of times during the winter, but not in the middle of June or September. I think this rate works in other cities because the money is there. My old roommates climbed down in Vega$ a couple of times and I think they said it cost $20.

    What the new gym will have to do to sustain it's revenue flow during the slow periods is to really go after groups (Boy/Girl Scouts, church groups, etc.) and kids. From what I understand...a birthday group will cost a minimum of $86 to do at the new gym. I couldn't find any info on group pricing. BSU offers group climbing on Friday and Saturday nights and I've only seen a couple of groups utilize that. We tried the group thing at the Downtown Y and that really didn't fly. We had a handful of groups pass through the West Y. Our wall mainly caters to kids cuz it's free and easy. Wings you have to rent the gym.

    Sorry for the long winded response danK, but I think it really boils down to the climbing opportunites here in Boise and "expensive" rates as to why I think Boise Peak Fitness will struggle after the honeymoon period.

    With all that being said, I do wish Peter Vanek and Boise Peak Fitness good luck with their venture.

    Nick

  13. #13
    TRAIL KUBUKI CORNDOGGER
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    abandoned auto malls

    Check out the closed auto malls where Main Street slips into Fairview before you get on the outbound connector before it crosses the river. There's plenty of showroom and mechanic space, plus you could add some outdoor and even under-a-roof outdoor props. Even better, there's office space for office stunts (heh heh - I once had one of my bikes to my cube farm office on a Saturday and it was a blast negotiating the tight 90 degree turns and cube aisles. There weren't many vertical challenges though.)

    As for the financing, I suppose you'd need to build a business case before you talk to THE MAN - like projected numbers of annual members and drop-in consumers, cost of overhead, start-up expenses, all that dollar-sign crap.

    As for me - I'd probably enjoy the novelty once or twice never to return. But you know me, I'm a cranky old [email protected]
    Nobody cares what kind of bike you ride.

  14. #14
    ride your bike
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr plow
    I would support you 100% if i lived in the US (did i assume right?), i'd ride as often as my circumstances would allow! Props for keeping the dream alive!!!
    Thanks! I appreciate the good vibes.

    Yesterday the head of parks and rec came to the local DJ spot to see what the commotion is about. It was a good visit. He was smiling and I could tell he was stoked on the idea. He gave me the name of the Dir. of Solid Waste in town b/c there's a spot near the landfill that's been used up and long since covered. That land can't really be used for much other than a park, he said. If I can get the solid waste guy to give me the ok on the land, then parks and rec will supply the dirt....at least that's the impression I got...
    Taking it easy for all you sinners.

  15. #15
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    No need to apologize. Excellent opinion/reply. Very insightful.

    Quote Originally Posted by BelaySlave

    Sorry for the long winded response danK, but I think it really boils down to the climbing opportunites here in Boise and "expensive" rates as to why I think Boise Peak Fitness will struggle after the honeymoon period.

    With all that being said, I do wish Peter Vanek and Boise Peak Fitness good luck with their venture.

    Nick

  16. #16
    Hi!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwistedCrank
    Check out the closed auto malls where Main Street slips into Fairview before you get on the outbound connector before it crosses the river. There's plenty of showroom and mechanic space, plus you could add some outdoor and even under-a-roof outdoor props.
    The one lot across from the old Lithia/Bob Rice Ford is now the home to Treasure Valley RV or sumpin' like that.

    The old Fred Meyer space on Overland/Curtis? (there's a Blockbuster in the parking lot) looks to be available as well as other spaces in there.

    Nick

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