Milton facility remains on budget, on time for opening in 2014
MILTON, ON, June 7, 2013 /CNW/ - A circle of Ontario cyclists helped to officially break ground today on Canada's new home for cycling: the Milton Pan Am/Parapan Am Velodrome.
Jointly funded by the Government of Canada and the Town of Milton, the facility will officially open in fall 2014 and have the address 2015 Pan Am Boulevard, commemorating the town's involvement in the "People's Games."
"In just 15 months, this empty field and high-performance sport in Canada will be transformed with the rising of the velodrome," said Ian Troop, chief executive officer of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee (TO2015).
"Like all of our new venue builds for the Games, the velodrome remains on budget and on time. Shortly after it opens in the fall of 2014, Milton will host its first international competition. This sport's test event will help us fine-tune our plans for delivering a world-class experience for our athletes and spectators in the summer of 2015."
Up to 20,000 spectators will watch top cyclists from the Americas and Caribbean compete in the velodrome — the sole facility of its kind in Canada — during the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.
Milton's 250-metre timber track, with two 42-degree banks, is designed to meet the most stringent requirements set by the International Cycling Union (UCI) to hold elite world championships. The nearest indoor facility meeting similar standards is located in Carson, California, where Canada's top cyclists currently train.
"We've worked hard over the past year with TO2015, the Government of Canada and our community donors, especially Peter Gilgan, to make this dream a reality for Milton," said Milton Mayor Gordon Krantz. "It's incredibly exciting for all of us to finally see it come together. By the time the velodrome is completed, we'll be ready to show the world and the rest of Canada all that Milton has to offer."
After the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, the building will be owned and operated by the Town of Milton and will be known as the Mattamy National Cycling Centre. The oval-shaped, three-storey, fully accessible velodrome is designed to function as both an international venue for competitive cycling and as a legacy community recreational centre.
For example, when cyclists are training on the track, the three multi-use courts located on the infield or bowl can be used for basketball and volleyball games, while joggers can use the walking track located on the spectator level — all at the same time.
It will also house offices for Cycling Canada and Cycling Ontario, a training lab, fitness centre, multi-purpose space, office space, café/lounge, community bicycle storage, and a retail bike and repair shop.
"Today's groundbreaking for the Milton Pan Am and Parapan Am Velodrome marks the beginning of a new era for sport in Milton," said the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Labour and Member of Parliament (Halton). "The building of this facility will not only allow us to host some of the best cyclists in the world during the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games, but will also make Milton a destination of choice for athletes and competitions long after the Games are over."
The Honourable Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport), added: "The Harper Government is a proud supporter of the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games. We are especially proud to support the building of this velodrome in Milton, which will be Canada's only indoor cycling facility that meets international specifications. This state-of-the-art facility will give our talented cycling athletes the opportunity to train and compete here in Canada."
In the past season, the Canadian women's team pursuit squad won a bronze medal at the 2012 Olympic Games, gold at the World Cup in Aguascalientes, Mexico and bronze at the 2013 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk, Belarus. On the men's side, the men's team sprint won silver in February at the 2013 UCI Pan-American Track Cycling Championships held in Mexico City. Joseph Veloce of Fonthill, ON, also captured silver at the championships in the individual men's sprint.
In 2012, para-cyclist Marie-Claude Molnar won a Paralympic bronze for Canada in London in the individual time trial, capping off her two bronze medals in the three-kilometre individual pursuit and the 500-metre time trial at the UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in Los Angeles. The men's tandem team also won bronze at the championships in the four-kilometre individual pursuit.
"The People's Games in Ontario are strengthening infrastructure for sport and recreation across southern Ontario, creating jobs and building communities," said Michael Chan, Ontario Minister Responsible for the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games. "This unique world-class velodrome will draw international level competitions, athletes and visitors from around the world, and will also serve as a local base for people of all ages, abilities and with a variety of interests for years after 2015."
Overall project costs for the velodrome are anticipated to come in at $56 million, which includes $47.4 million to design, build and finance the project. The remainder is comprised of capital expenditures for equipment, transaction fees, project management and other ancillary costs.
"The velodrome will be a centre for cycling athletes of all ages, abilities and aspirations and for people who enjoy all the activities that will be part of this venue's programming," said Kevin Flynn, Member of Provincial Parliament for Oakville. "The venue will be a vibrant, active sport and recreation centre for the Town of Milton and communities across the region."
In addition to the government funding, the Town of Milton has received a number of private donations from the local cycling community, led by philanthropist and business leader Peter Gilgan.
"As exciting as it is to stand here today, I can only imagine what it will be like for all of us when we first wheel out onto this magnificent track in 2014," said Peter Gilgan, founder and chief executive officer of Mattamy Homes. "Our entire cycling community is excited about this new velodrome becoming the home of Canadian cycling. It will be amazing when the first Canadian cyclist who trains here wins gold — maybe in 2015!"
The TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee (TO2015) is tasked with the responsibility of planning, managing and delivering the Games. Its mission is to ignite the spirit through a celebration of sport and culture. The TORONTO 2015 Pan American Games will take place July 10−26 and the Parapan American Games August 7-14.
The 2015 Games are funded by the Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario, as well as other partners and sponsors. CIBC is the Lead Partner of the Games.
For more information about the Games, please visit toronto2015.org.
SOURCE: Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games
For further information:
Director, Media Relations and Chief Spokesperson, TO2015