Another update on UCI bicycle championships in Richmond, and companion programming
The UCI world bicycle racing championships are mostly held in Europe, but out of a ten year cycle, from one to three races are held on other continents. This year they will be racing in Richmond, September 19th-27th.
Over the years in the run up to the event, the city has been using their hosting of this marquee event to push forward a more active pro-bicycling agenda ("Richmond Biking roundup sparked by the UCI Road World Championships held this September), as well as to use the event as a way to promote Richmond's tourism program more towards international visitors.
They've had some failures. The city's first cycle track won't be in place before the races and the same goes for bike sharing ("City running out of time to launch bike sharing by cycling event," Richmond Times-Dispatch ).
I thought it was interesting that the local Keep America Beautiful group is organizing litter cleanups in advance of the races.
I am not particularly into bike racing, but I am really impressed that many of the area's museums and other cultural attractions are organizing bicycling-specific exhibits during the races--some of the exhibits will be up beyond the races. The RTD has a full lineup of the programs here, "See cycles of history at bike exhibits all over Richmond."
And many of the city's cultural institutions will be open later during the event (my sense is that it won't necessarily result in greater attendance, because most people are there to see the races--but it's still a good idea).
... and like how economic impact data touted for various sporting events tends to be overstated, according to the RTD, "Some hoteliers say bike race numbers 'really overhyped'." Although bookings are higher. It's just that some hoteliers thought that the totals touted for the number of spectators, 450,000, were comprised of all out-of-town visitors needing hotel rooms, which wasn't the case.