University in bid to build velodrome

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Plans have been unveiled for an Olympic-size velodrome in York.

The University of York is in talks with British Cycling and others to identify cash for a 250-metre velodrome at York Sport Village, which is expected to cost £1m.

The outdoor velodrome, which will be open to the public, will be the only one of its type in Yorkshire and will be used for training and cycling events. It is hoped it will open next year, when the Grand Départ of the Tour de France comes to the city.

A university spokeswoman said: “In the year the Tour de France comes to York, this has the potential to be a superb addition to the city’s sports facilities. The development underscores the university’s commitment to the health and well-being of the community.”

Confirmation of the plan came ahead of the launch of Sky Ride Local events in York.

Following the first Sky Ride York, which saw 5,500 cyclists take to the streets on September 14, new and inclusive traffic-free rides will be held on the 1km purpose built cycling track at the York Sport Village this weekend. Get Cycling will have a fleet of adapted bikes for people to test.

Rides will take place this Saturday and Sunday from 3-5pm.

Coun Sonja Crisp, the council’s cabinet member for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “Ahead of stage two of the 2014 Tour de France starting in York we want to make cycling as accessible as possible for everyone. Inclusive Sky Rides will go a long way in helping us achieve this and give everyone a chance to enjoy riding a bike.”