It all started with an idea.
Rey Cruz has been cycling since he was 5 years old and looking for something to do as a child in New Jersey.
“Bikes were the first real taste of freedom I had,” Cruz said. “And when we moved to Texas and I started getting older, I graduated to road bikes and mountain biking.”
Cycling in his passion. For him, it’s never been a workout but rather something to keep stress away and keep healthy at the same time. So when he and his family moved from Houston to New Territory in 2013, the idea for a pump track – a circular loop track with a series of hills and banked turns meant for cyclists to ride by only “pumping” their bike — brew in his mind.
“Coming up from BMX and riding BMX, pump tracks are great because you can learn a lot of skills,” Cruz said. “It really caters and creates a community for cyclists if there is a pump track in their town.”
Rey was working at Society Cycles Works (now Trek Cycles) in Sugar Land when City Manager Mike Goodrum came in and the two got to talking.
“He asked what I thought the City needed,” Cruz said. “So I took my shot and proposed the pump track.”
Goodrum was intrigued.
“My first response was ‘what the heck is a pump track,’” Goodrum said. “He pulled out his phone and showed me videos of just the coolest thing and it seemed like it could create a real community behind it. I sent it over to our Parks department and everyone loved it.”
Pump tracks are great if biking trails nearby are difficult to ride due to weather or the cyclist is a new rider. Cruz said that not only is a pump track great for the community, it helps show that City amenities can become an economic driver. After months of construction, the Sugar Land Pump Track opened on March 25, 2023.
“This community is built up of so many families and kiddos,” Cruz said. “If your kids isn’t in an organized sport but they have a bike, it makes sense to use the pump track. It’s something good, fun and different. We’ve got people who are in their 70’s out here riding.”
Cruz is grateful that his basic idea of creating a pump track in his community was able to flourish here in Sugar Land.
“I tried to do this idea in Houston,” Cruz said. “It was a pretty frustrating process that ultimately didn’t turn out. It just proves that if you approach a subject properly and have a common interest, you can make a positive inclusion to your environment. The fact that I could live here, have an idea and the City could make it happen? That is just the coolest thing.”