Epic Cycles' move to the South Lake trail on the shores of Lake Minneola in Clermont is a little delayed, but much anticipated by owner Roman Brana, local cyclists and the City of Clermont, home to many triathlons and other cycling centric events.
"It is taking longer than expected," Brana said. "We are building a lot of things that need to be updated," he said. That's not unexpected considering the building was originally built in 1930 and the rebuild incorporates a lot of energy efficiencies.
The new store should be open by Spring, Brana said, and, at about 8,000 square feet, it will be more than twice as big as the 3,500 square feet in its current location at 2507 S. Hwy 27.
A number of new services are planned at the new store, including a café and juice bar facing the lake, showers, an indoor spinning studio with three classes a day versus three a week, and rental storage space for bicycles.
Brana said he listened to older customers who said they would ride their bicycles more often on the trail if they didn't have to load their bicycles on their cars and bring them to the trail.
There will also be some higher-tech other features for performance bicyclists in the new building, including a recovery area with hot and cold massage room and compression boots designed to help move the painful lactic acid out of leg muscles.
There has been no shortage of support from the city of Clermont for Epic Cycles' move, Brana said.
"Jim Hitt has been a big help from the beginning," said Brana of the city's economic development director.
Clermont's master plan for downtown includes the desire to bring more traffic from the lake front, both pedestrian and bicyclists, to downtown, which isn't easily noticed from Lake Minneola because of the city's hilly terrain.
The city is hoping that Epic Cycle's presence nearby will facilitate that. To further tie the waterfront to downtown, the city is considering creating a zig-zag road, similar to Lombard Street in San Francisco, for pedestrians and cyclists that would provide a fun way to go between the two.
Hitt has suggested calling the connector "The Clermont Twist."