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Work on York velodrome could start within months
WORK on an Olympic-standard velodrome in York is set to start early next year if plans are approved, to ensure funding is secured.
The 250-metre outdoor cycling venue is planned for the York Sport Village at the University of York’s Heslington East campus, and full plans for the project have now been submitted to City of York Council.
The aim is for it to be completed in 2014, the same year as York forms part of the route for the opening stages of the Tour de France.
Some of the funding will come from British Cycling, and a statement sent to council planners by the scheme’s agents, O’Neill Associates, said this was “time-critical”, meaning the velodrome’s construction is expected to start in late February or early March if the authority gives it the go-ahead.
It has not yet been confirmed whether the application will go before a planning committee or if officials will be given delegated powers to decide.
The velodrome is likely to cost about £1 million and would be built next to the Sport Village’s closed cycle-racing circuit. The land was originally set to be an athletics base before the decision was made to upgrade the existing athletics track at the university’s Heslington West campus instead.
The layout of the scheme has also indicated a “cycling building”, a mountain bike circuit and an expanded 3G pitch which could be used for rugby may be added to the Sport Village in future.
The oval track - the only one of its type in Yorkshire - would be too dangerous to use when it rains, meaning it would only operate between May and September, but floodlights would allow it to open longer in the evenings. It would also be available to the public as well as university staff, students and local cycling clubs.
The statement by O’Neill Associates’ said: “The velodrome will create a new facility to complement and enhance the existing cycle track and help develop York into a sport cycling hub for the region.
“It will help local clubs to attract new members and young riders in gaining experience.
"In addition, the velodrome will be available for use by the university, enhancing the sporting offer it can provide for prospective students.”
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