AN ambitious scheme to see a new velodrome open in York is set to be approved next week.
Plans for a 250m Olympic-length velodrome at York Sports Village will go before a planning committee on Thursday, and officials have recommended the scheme goes ahead.
It would be built on land originally earmarked for a new athletics track, before that scheme was abandoned in favour of an upgrade for the existing cinder athletics track at the University’s Heslington West campus.
A university spokesman said if planning permission was granted building work would start immediately, and the velodrome should be open by the end of the year.
He added: “The university is delighted that the velodrome project has the support of British Cycling and looks forward to it receiving planning approval from City of York Council.
“We are committed to building on the success of our floodlit road cycling circuit at York Sport Village and we are convinced the new facility will add to York Sport and the city’s cycling reputation in the year we welcome the Tour De France to the city.”
The 250m-long, seven-metre-wide, oval cycling track will banked up at an 18 percent gradient to rise by four metres at each end. It is close to a closed road cycling circuit already on the site, and there are plans to add mountain-bike trials to the facilities.
Sport England has said it supports the £1million scheme, but recommended that planners insist on a community use agreement so cycling clubs and the public can use the velodrome.
The body has also quoted its York sports strategy document, published in December, which said: “The recent announcement that the city will host the second day of the Tour de France Grand Depart in 2014 has increased the interest and enthusiasm in having modern, accessible cycling facilities to provide a sporting legacy.”
It will make use of parking already planned for the athletics track scheme, but although the university wants a cycling building with changing rooms and meeting spaces on the site it has had to wait until funding is available to make solid plans, council documents say.