After nearly five years of legal battles, a bicycle motocross park could soon be coming to Atascadero.
On Nov. 27, the Atascadero City Council voted 4-0 to support construction of a BMX track. Councilman Jerry Clay refrained from voting because he owns property within 500 feet of the proposed track, which will possibly be located on a 24-acre parcel on Sycamore Road in Atascadero.
The Atascadero Mutual Water Company owns the land and agreed to lease the property to the city for a $1 annual fee.
"We encourage the use of the property for public use and the board felt this was a benefit for the community," said John Neil, the water company's general manager.
The lease will require the city to have liability insurance and will also include a condition that states if the track isn't properly maintained or is used for purposes not stated in the agreement, it will return to the Atascadero Mutual Water Company. Motorized vehicles will not be permitted.
In order to cover maintenance costs, riders will be required to pay a $45 annual membership fee and $5 each time they want to use the course. Scholarships will be available for children who can't afford the fees.
"We're always looking for more opportunities for kids to engage in healthy activities and stay out of trouble," said council member Ellen Beraud. "There are not too many good places to ride here. This is a great place. I hope it is a big success."
In addition to the BMX track, the final plan of development could include a registration and concession building, portable restroom facilities, and a utility building. The track is tentatively scheduled to open in spring of 2008.