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60-to-80 acre "world class bike park" could come to Fort Collins if some in Colorado cycling community have their way

60-to-80 acre bike park could come to Fort Collins
60-to-80 acre bike park could come to Fort Collins 02:42

Editor's note: This Northern Colorado story was first published in November. This week it was featured in the CBS News Colorado special "Your Reporter: Covering Colorado First 2023."

Grassroots organization Fort Collins Bike Park Collective is seeking to build one of the region's largest bike parks on the western edge of Fort Collins. Those involved are hoping to build a 60-to-80 acre bike park on the former Hughes Stadium property along the foothills.


"Fort Collins is a bike city," said Kevin Krause, one of the leaders involved in the effort. "It is huge; it is in the fabric of who we are."

Fort Collins is home to more than 200 miles of paved cycling lanes and paths, and it was recognized as a platinum-level cycling community.

However, there are very few outlets to challenging cycling courses for those who enjoy jumps, hills and more. One of those is the Spring Canyon Pump Park, which is only half an acre in size in the southwest corner of the city.

"It is too small," said Olivia Brown, and 11-year-old bike enthusiast.

While the small bike park is fun at first, those visiting it said they regularly become bored and feel the park limits their ability to challenge themselves.

Children at the park told CBS News Colorado they felt a bigger park was needed to continue to let them grow in their skillset.

"I really like biking because there are many ways you can use it," said June Porter, a Fort Collins kid who loves to ride her bike. "You can challenge yourself in a lot of ways."

Stacy Cabbage, a mother of a 4-year-old, said her child quickly outgrew the challenges of the park, and wants a larger park with more unique biking opportunities.

"He is four. He is fearless. He wants a bigger bike park," Cabbage said. "He does not like to come to this park because he thinks this is a baby bike park."

"(The bike park) is just not enough. It is not enough for the community we have here," said Taylor Calmus, a Fort Collins parent advocating for a newer and larger park.

Krause said those pulling for the park are largely Fort Collins parents and children who would like to stop traveling to nearby towns and cities to get the challenges they want.

"We are just a group of community members," Krause said.

The group would like to see a 60-to-80-acre bike park built on the property Colorado State University used to host football games on. The old Hughes Stadium was demolished years ago and has largely sat vacant and quiet, away from those on trails or playing disc golf. The community recently voted to prevent housing from being built on the property, rather favoring a push to keep it a space for parks and recreation.

Voters also recently passed a measure to increase the sales tax in order to improve and add parks and recreation opportunities to the city.

Krause said both of those votes fit perfectly with their desires.

While there is a group of residents in Fort Collins that would like to see the property remain as is, Krause said this was the perfect way to attract more residents to enjoy the property while also promoting outdoor recreation.

"We could have a world-class bike park here in Fort Collins somewhere in the 60-80 acre range," Krause said.

The property is more than 160 acres in size, meaning a majority of the property could remain as is while also accommodating the bike park.

"It has great typography. It is not just a flat site," Krause said.

Adults and children involved in the push for the park said they felt a new and larger park would give people of all skillsets and ages a better opportunity to grow their cycling skills while also remaining active and meeting others.

"(A new park) would be great because then the little kids can have an area, and the older ones that have more skills can have another area," Porter said.

"To do that, we have to get the city to love bikes at every stage, every age and every ability and really elevate the bike culture we already have to another level," Krause said.

The initiative is largely being pushed by word of mouth and on social media on pages like @FoCo_Bike_Parks on Instagram.

"(Fort Collins) is very active and outdoorsy. This is something Fort Collins needs," Cabbage said.

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