Brooklyn will conjure up a myriad of different images for individuals – Its history is vibrant, sometimes troubled but ultimately it is one of the iconic New York boroughs.
I think it’s fair to say that Brooklyn shares some similarities with its London cousin Shoreditch. Development is ongoing, creative service industry have become common place and there is an air of gentrification. Yet underneath it is still Brooklyn – diverse, rich and a definite grit to it.
As the Windham world cup is only 90 minutes from NYC itself, VeloSolutions took the opportunity to make an opening day party happen and invited the mtb press along.
To understand why there is a beautifully crafted tarmac pump track underneath the Williamsburg bridge you need to know the background;
“NYCMTB and the Brooklyn Farms were given a piece of land right by the waterfront, next to the Williamsburg Bridge and the Domino Sugar Factory. While the Brooklyn Farms are going to grow their own vegetables and enjoy one of the only green spaces in Brooklyn”.
As Claudio says, the opportunity to collaborate was too much to pass up “Wow, how cool would it be to build a pump track in New York City!?” When he showed us pictures, we thought: “Is this really true?” When we went to see the site, we just didn’t know what to think anymore, but we knew, we had to build this pump track no matter what.”
I have to say upon arrival I was shocked at the tranquility of the area, right next to an ongoing development site. The place has a vibrance about it yet it also retains the rugged edge that makes New York what it is.
The track, painted by artist Jon Burgerman, is a thing of beauty. The tarmacadam surfacing only adds to it’s stunning curves and seems to enhance it’s appeal – it is, after all, located only a small hop away from the famed Manhattan skyline.
With the crops already growing in the Brooklyn Farms vegetable plot and a large swathe of lawn, the entire space is a fine example of usable, clean spaces in urban environments.
Velo had brought in the Red Bull DJ truck, a rapper and a burrito catering truck. There were also a handful of the world’s top pros ready to enjoy themselves after a day of sightseeing.
But it wasn’t just them. In all around 200 people on bikes, skateboards and blades turned up. On a balmy evening, with the Manhatten skyline on full show, this amazing facility really was providing the goods.
There was no hierachy, no trail snobbery – just a bunch of rad people enjoying the flow of this installation that blended function with art.