Plans for Eastern Passage BMX track gain support
The group behind the idea wants to create a course for BMX and mountain bikers on the Eastern Passage Common. It hopes to convince the rest of the community that the track would be a great way to serve youth in the area.
The 30-hectare site currently has a clubhouse, baseball and soccer fields, as well as outside exercise equipment.
Local children have already broken a rough trail through the overgrown grass close to the ocean.
First in Nova Scotia
There are 10 sports parks in HRM shared by skateboarders and bikers, but the Eastern Passage course would be the first dedicated to biking east of Dieppe, N.B. The proposed track is 350 metres long and would feature multiple dirt lanes circling around the site.
"When I was walking around here I was thinking this unused land would be perfect for a BMX bike track because we already have a large car park here, we already have a clubhouse, lighting, electricity — everything we would need to support a track," said Geoff Hoare.
The group has already met with HRM to discuss the track and councillor Jackie Barkhouse is now putting her support behind it.
"I think it's quite realistic that we could see something being built here next year. Whether that's something that's phased in or how that is funded — we have yet to work through all those things," she said Wednesday.
"Definitely, we have to get the community engaged."
BMX racing is rapidly growing in popularity in Nova Scotia and other places. It was an Olympic sport for the first time at the 2008 Beijing Games.
Kids like the idea
Children on their bikes in Eastern Passage Wednesday were excited about the possibility of a new track in their neighbourhood.
"It would be excellent to practice and do tricks and to race and be a better bike rider," said Warren Smith.
Drew Smith agreed.
"There would be something to do on hot days. We come up here all the time, so we'll actually have something that is really fun to do," she said.
The group hopes to have the track open by next summer.