The Red Mountain Greenway and Recreational Area Commission has entered into an agreement with RideBHM to build and operate a first-of-its-kind mountain bike park off Lakeshore Parkway in Birmingham.
RideBHM will be adjacent to Red Mountain Park on 200 acres owned by the Red Mountain Commission. With an initial offering of two climbs, five to six unidirectional downhill trails and a “base camp,” including a skills area, RideBHM’s Phase 1 product will feature a progressive range of trails and amenities for mountain bikers from novice to expert. Riders will be able to purchase day passes or memberships to access the RideBHM trail system.
“We are thrilled to bring this concept to life at an incredible location in partnership with Red Mountain Park,” said RideBHM CEO Emile Hughes. “We are collaborating with some of the best trail builders in the Southeast to create a family-friendly environment that brings people together around a common pursuit and puts Alabama on the map in the mountain biking world.
“While we are excited to deliver our initial product, we also believe this is just the beginning. We plan to continue investing in high-quality trails both at RideBHM and at future locations,” he added.
RideBHM is the prototype location of Ride Resorts, a Birmingham-based benefit corporation that aims to build sustainable communities through mountain biking. Its mission is to “deliver relentlessly positive experiences through mountain biking. R-I-D-E is not just our brand. It is our way: Re-create, Include, Develop and Energize.”
Hughes said RideBHM has been excited to work with the Alabama Power Foundation to become Alabama’s first benefit LLC.
“Their cultivation of benefit corporations aligns with RideBHM’s values in not just creating a viable and exciting outdoor recreation business, but also generating real social impact. We deeply appreciate their support in our pledge to create meaningful experiences and community for kids throughout Birmingham, regardless of background.”
Benefit corporations are still fairly new to Alabama. They are for-profit enterprises that work to provide a public benefit even as they aim to produce profit.
Jennifer Andress, chair of the Red Mountain Greenway and Recreational Area Commission, said RideBHM presents a unique opportunity.
“We’re able to accomplish several goals with this partnership,” she said. “We can answer the demand for more mountain-bike-oriented trails, activate otherwise dormant land, incubate a local outdoor recreation business and generate revenue to support Red Mountain Park.”
Red Mountain Park is a public-private partnership between the Red Mountain Greenway and Recreational Area Commission and the Red Mountain Park Foundation. The park offers 1,500 wooded acres in Birmingham, 3 miles west of Interstate Highway 65 (Lakeshore Parkway Exit 255). Visitors can enjoy over 15 miles of walking, hiking and mountain biking trails, and the 6-acre Remy’s Dog Park.
(Courtesy of Alabama NewsCenter)