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Press Releases

Saturday, September 24, 2005
No. 90


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Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe today joined Michael Vitti, Vice President of CLIMB (Concerned Long Island Mountain Bikers); William Dawson Smith of NYC Mountain Bikers; Ozzie Perez, owner of Dyckman Street’s Tread Bike Shop; Frances Rodriguez, representing the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation; and members of Community Board 12 Martin Collins Zead Ramadan, to break ground on the first official mountain biking trail in New York City. Volunteers will lay out the design for the trail, implanting flags in the ground to mark the path and wind around environmentally sensitive areas.


“This 2.5-mile biking trail will create a first-of-its-kind recreational venue in Inwood and will allow the growing number of bike enthusiasts to exercise in an otherwise underused section of the park,” said Commissioner Benepe.  “Not to be overlooked is the environmental value of the sport itself—mountain biking instills a respect for nature, and kids who learn to love nature become adults who strive to protect it.”


“This is the tenth trails grant to a <Αxml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />New York City Park, but the very first to be implemented in a City Park in Manhattan,” said Bernadette Castro, Commissioner of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Commissioner Castro noted that “State Parks is very pleased to be able to assist City Parks in the creation of this novel recreational resource, particularly in an area of dense population and high recreational needs.”


The biking trail will be built with $100,000 in funding from New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.  It will weave through the area on the border of Washington Heights and Inwood, between Fort George Hill, Dyckman Street, and 10th Avenue.   The natural surface trail will be flanked by George Washington High School at the top and the Dyckman Houses at the bottom, ideally positioned to provide new outdoor recreational opportunities for the growing youth population.  Due to the trail’s proximity to the Dyckman Street stop of the No. 1 train and the Dyckman Street Greenway, this trail will also serve bikers from all over New York City. 


The trail will include a black diamond feature, a BMX track, and a challenge trail for younger and/or newer riders.  The project will also include the development and installation of trailhead kiosks, trail markers and interpretive signage, natural resources monitoring, landscaping material to replant denuded areas, trail building tools, and educational pamphlets that advocate safety and environmental stewardship.


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