Tour de Troit 2012
Tour de Troit 2012
DETROIT — In Detroit's Roosevelt Park on Sat., Sept. 15, 5,000 cyclists gathered and rode a 30-mile course around the city and toured some of its most beloved landmarks as well as great, and not-so-great, neighborhoods.
Now in its eleventh year, the Tour de Troit raises awareness for cycling, as well as funds for the Southwest Detroit Greenlink, including construction, administration and wayfinding, and other greenways and cycling projects.
Starting humbly at around 20 riders in 2000, it has grown tremendously in the past decade, ever seeing more riders than the previous year.
“Over the last few years we’ve seen crazy growth,” says co-founder and self-proclaimed "cruise director," Bil Lusa. “It is … a collaborative effort with some very dedicated volunteers.”
“It’s a lot of work but it has the potential to be a good draw for recreational tourists,” Kavanaugh says. “[People’s] experiences are positive. It is and will be a great reason to visit Detroit in the years to come.”
In 2011, Kavanaugh says the Tour team experimented with eight miles of closed course and it went well. For 2012, organizers worked extra hard to develop a fully closed, 30-mile course, complete with police escorts.
Kavanaugh says although it's a lot of work, the closed course is worth it, because it’s easier to manage the volume of riders and allows them to travel at whatever pace is comfortable. Kavanaugh says the new course infrastructure could potentially accomodate Detroit Marathon-like attendance, which saw almost 20,000 runners in 2010.
Proceeds from Tour directly fund projects the Corktown-Mexicantown Greenlink, part of Detroit’s ongoing work to increase sustainable neighborhood connectivity.
To see more tour photos, check out our Flickr page and let us know what you think in the comments below!