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No Velodrome for us…

The Waikato and Bay of Plenty has beaten out the rest of the country to be named as the preferred tenderer for a $29 million national cycling centre but it’s not clear yet whether the region’s councils will support the facility.

The announcement by Sport and Recreation NZ (SPARC) was made tonight after the Waikato/Bay of Plenty bid was selected over other short-listed bids from Palmerston North and Auckland.

Originally seven bids were received from throughout the country.

But  Hamilton City – $3 million – and Waipa District Councils – $3.5 million –  are being asked to pay the bulk of the council funding and their support for the high performance cycling hub, which would include a velodrome, is yet to be confirmed.

Palmerston North Mayor Jono Naylor said although he was bitterly disappointed by the announcement, he was exceptionally proud of the collaborative work that had gone into preparing the bid to claim Sparc’s $7 million contribution to the centre.

“We are certainly ready to step in should the Waikato-Bay of Plenty bid not come together.”

SPARC chief executive Peter Miskimmin said SPARC, BikeNZ and Waikato/Bay of Plenty would now enter into negotiations on technical and commercial details such as the centre’s layout and design, and the construction and delivery timetable.

If agreement cannot be reached with Waikato/Bay of Plenty during the velodrome negotiations, SPARC has the option to negotiate with one of the other short-listed tenderers.