Page A1 | Tulsa World E-edition


Finally, there is more to the old Evans-Fintube site than ramshackle buildings and weeds growing through the hard, dry ground.

The long-promised United States BMX stadium and headquarters are rising from the ground and the grand opening is only a few months away.

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Shane Fernandez, president and chairman of USA BMX, said Monday that the organization is expected to move to its new headquarters in January, with a groundbreaking ceremony to follow shortly thereafter.

“We’re pretty excited,” Fernandez said on a media tour of the facilities. “We have a Hall of Fame banquet, so what we plan to do is, immediately after the ribbon is cut, have our entire Hall of Fame here, then have this ceremony, then participate directly in this first national event. “

The project includes the 2,000-seat open-air, free-span Hardesty National BMX Stadium and a US BMX Headquarters building that will also house the organization’s Hall of Fame, foundation, training facilities and pro shop.

“What makes this stadium interesting is that we will have it scheduled six days a week,” Fernandez said. “So during the day we’ll have field trips with our STEM and STEAM programs through our foundation, bringing in schools.

“We will also have coaches, so parents who want to try BMX, we will have bikes and helmets for them as well as professional coaches who can teach them. … And then we will also have local and regional practices and races every weekend. The other thing you’re going to see are national events.

USA BMX has also organized three “one-off” events to be held at the new BMX facilities next year: the Stacyc (Harley Davidson) World Championship; National Vintage BMX and Bicycle Show; and the Pro Invitational.

The two-story headquarters building has offices for approximately 25 people. The facility will accommodate not only the employees of the USA BMX and USA BMX foundation, but also the employees of the new freestyle division of USA BMX and a BMX track design and engineering company called ABA Ethos.

City officials initially said around 40 to 50 BMX employees in the United States would move to Tulsa from the organization’s current headquarters in Gilbert, Ariz., But Fernandez said only two of them had. actually moved as most of the Arizona-based team traveled non-stop.

Instead, he plans to hire around 25 people to staff the Tulsa facility.

The USA BMX project took longer and cost more than initially expected. City officials, backed by Expo Square’s long history of hosting the USA BMX Grand Nationals, proposed in 2016 to include $ 15 million in the Vision Tulsa sales tax package to attract USA BMX to Tulsa. .

The original proposal called for the construction of the headquarters and stadium in Expo Square, but that deal fell through after USA BMX and Expo Square failed to come to an agreement.

The city later announced that the project would be built on the Evans-Fintube site just north of downtown as part of an effort to revitalize the area in and around the historic Greenwood district.

“I told our team that I wanted to make a collage, because I honestly think I have 12 different site sketches,” Fernandez said. ” And here ? And here ? And here ?

The price of the project is 23 million dollars. The city is using $ 6.5 million in municipal funds and a $ 1.5 million donation from the Hardesty Family Foundation to close the gap between the funding approved by voters and the actual cost.

The city has issued requests for proposals for a mixed-use development on the south end of the 22.3-acre Evans-Fintube property that could include the restoration of the historic Evans Building, also known as the Oklahoma Iron Works. Building.

The PD calls for projects that would enhance and celebrate the cultural diversity of North Tulsa and Greenwood District.

Fernandez said the history – and the growth of Tulsa over the past half-dozen years – has helped make Tulsa a place the BMX community is embracing.

“When the (USA BMX) team comes here, or the riders, and they go through downtown, (they say) ‘Oh my God,’” Fernandez said. “So people are getting addicted to Tulsa.”

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