After fierce competition among 11 cities, the US Bicycling Hall of Fame will relocate to the city of Davis, California, from Somerville, New Jersey. The US Bicycling Hall of Fame Board of Directors narrowed the field down to Greensboro, North Carolina, and city of Davis before voting on April 8 to begin exclusive negotiations with the Davis-based California Bicycle Museum.
"We're very excited that the Bicycling Hall of Fame will move to Davis, which hosted the first Tour of California stage earlier this year," said Caroline Beteta, president & CEO of the California Travel & Tourism Commission and the US Travel Association. "We believe it will be a wonderful new incentive for visitors to explore the Sacramento region... as well as access outdoor recreation such as winery hopping, horseback riding, boating, and of course, biking our scenic roads."
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger recognized the move and took the opportunity to tout his state's charms. "No other state embraces the fitness and environmentally responsible lifestyle of cycling more than the Golden State, which is why we host one of the most prominent cycling competitions every year - the Tour of California. Having the Hall of Fame here in California is yet another testament to why our beautiful state is the best place in the nation and the world to live, work and play."
In a brief statement by President Dan Kehew, the California Bicycle Museum Board of Directors thanked the Davis community, the City of Davis, and the University of California, Davis for supporting the relocation proposal, which will involve integration with the California Bicycle Museum and thus a relocation to a larger facility in Davis. City of Davis officials are still in negotiations with several local facilities and will announce the new location for the museums within the next several weeks.
Dawn Wylong, president of the Hall of Fame, said that overwhelming Davis support for cycling tipped the scales. "The Davis community is passionate about bicycles, at every level, in every aspect of cycling," Wylong said. "In Davis, the Hall of Fame will be celebrated and appreciated for what it represents."
Wylong added that Davis will enable the US Bicycling Hall of Fame to develop into a destination that represents the history, development and accomplishments of the sport of cycling, as a national organization.
The California Bicycle Museum expects to finalize the relocation agreement with the Hall of Fame and, in doing so, secure the long-term use of a city-owned building. Kehew and Wylong described the partnership of both organizations as a logical future step and the eventual outcome could be a major visitor attraction and learning center in Northern California. The California Bicycle Museum currently provides historical bicycle-related materials.