Rock climbing gym Brooklyn Boulders plans to expand to Chicago in the near future. This fall, Brooklyn Boulders signed a 15-year lease for the site of their new gym. The vacant space has 25,000 square feet in an unannounced building near downtown Chicago.
Brooklyn Boulders, which calls itself New York City's only dedicated rock climbing gym, first opened in 2009. Since then, they've slowly expanded. The East-Coast-based gym just opened up a spot in Somerville, Massachusetts, right outside of Boston. Now, they plan to branch out to the Midwest with their soon-to-be Chicago-based location.
Along with a list of small basement bouldering gyms and a handful of athletic gyms that feature rock walls, First Ascent is expected to be the new Brooklyn Boulders' biggest competition. Set to open in the spring of 2014, First Ascent will be set in the South Loop, featuring 55-foot walls. The space, however, will only come in at 5,000 square feet, a fifth of the expected size of the new Brooklyn Boulders.