Wanganui to prepare bid for Cycling Centre of Excellence - 14/12/2010Wanganui District Council today agreed to prepare a tender for the national Cycling Centre of Excellence (CCOE) for the council’s approval in early 2011.
The government is seeking requests for proposals for the CCOE, which will include road and track cycling, mountainbiking and BMX, as part of an increased focus on high performance sport.
Mayor Annette Main said that at its meeting today the council resolved to undertake the necessary work to prepare a detailed bid for a CCOE for Wanganui to be approved by council in January.
“If we decide to go ahead with a tender, and I very much hope that we will, it will be the culmination of a lot of groundwork that has already been done,” Mayor Main said.
“Wanganui has a proud history of cycling and this was enhanced when the Cooks Gardens velodrome was built in 1995, attracting national and international events and training camps. However, since the covered velodrome in Invercargill was built, Wanganui has missed out on events because, with an outdoor velodrome, we are dependent on the weather for events to run smoothly.
“In late 2006, with the government’s growing investment in high performance sport, council decided to investigate roofing the velodrome and making it a multi-purpose facility that could host other sports and events, as well as track cycling. Those investigations resulted in the inclusion of the Events Centre/Velodrome project in Referendum ’08 where it received very strong public support and was the highest polling project.
“A successful bid for the CCOE will have significant economic and growth spin-offs for Wanganui and the entire region. A number of other centres are considering bids for the CCOE but we believe our location, existing and potential facilities and proven ability to manage national and international cycling events will be major factors in our favour.”
A working party headed by Cr Philippa Baker-Hogan will develop a tender proposal for presentation to the council in late January. The working party will also seek funding support for the CCOE.