The city of Isanti is considering building an indoor BMX facility near the current outdoor track located at Isanti Parkway Northwest.
During the Isanti City Council meeting Tuesday, April 15, Isanti Mayor George Wimmer explained the indoor BMX facility is proposed to be 72,000 square feet and estimated to cost $1.5 million to $1.6 million.
He explained the facility would be owned by the city and paid for through a 10-year bond issued by the city, with the Rum River BMX Association making long-term lease payments to the city. Wimmer said this is the same model used by the city when the indoor hockey arena was built.
Following discussion, the council approved a motion to have the city engineer prepare performance specifications, have city staff work with its bond consultants on finance options for a year-round indoor BMX track and have it brought back for review at the next council meeting on May 6.
Wimmer said a parking lot will be built as part of this project that will add 120 parking spaces to Bluebird Park, located near the outdoor BMX track. There will also be public bathrooms and a changing room with the project. The life expectancy of the facility is a minimum of 40 years.
Wimmer said according to a letter received by USA BMX, the facility is guaranteed to be the only one of its type in a 100-mile radius and noted USA BMX will not sanction any other new tracks for at least 10 years.
Wimmer said some dollars will be set aside for capital improvements, and there is a contingency plan in place incase the facility doesn’t do as well as expected.
“At the end of the day, the lease payments would cover the total cost,” Wimmer said. “This will be a fantastic facility and a huge asset to the community. That area out there has gone from a weed field to a gorgeous track that was rated as the fourth best track in the nation a couple of years ago.
“This track will bring thousands of people into our community. This will be a key building block to get other economic development entities going. We have looked at the payment schedule and value of the building. We have looked at this from all angles. This facility really adds to an already incredible park. It’s just fantastic.”
Wimmer thanked the volunteers with the Rum River BMX Association for their patronage to the community.
“You have all done some really nice efforts on this, and that’s what makes Isanti such a great place to live,” Wimmer said. “All the volunteers with BMX work so hard, and this will really be a wonderful project. We have a lot of work to do yet, but to have something like this come in to the community will really be great. You are a group that really makes things happen. You guys have done a fantastic job with everything you’ve done out there at the track, and we couldn’t be prouder to be a part of this project. This really will be fantastic for the city.”
Wimmer noted some needed improvements at the public works facility will also be taken care of with this project.
Representatives from the BMX Association were excited to hear the city is considering moving forward with the project.
“As all of you know, we are very excited and motivated to do this project, and we have the numbers to prove we can make this work,” Aaron Zdon said. “We’ve worked hard on this project.”
Track operator Kevin Riedemann gave much praise to the city for its willingness to consider the process.
“We thank you for your time, and we’re very excited,” Riedemann said. “Since we’ve started this journey many years ago, we’ve had a plan in place and continue to move forward with the plan. This summer, we will be teaching a STEM program out there, which focuses on science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We will help with the physical education of our students, as well as their mental education. There are a lot of great things yet to come.”