Work finishes on Olympic cycling track

WORK has been completed on the 2012 timber cycling track, keeping the Velodrome on target to be the first Olympic Park venue to be completed early next year.

The 6,000 seat Velodrome will host the Olympic and Paralympic track cycling events in 2012. After the Games, the Velodrome will be used by elite athletes, as well as east Londoners, and will include a caf�, bike hire and cycle workshop facilities.

Work to install the timber cycling track began in September and has now been completed. Work is also well advanced on the external timber cladding of the Velodrome using Western Red Cedar, highlighting the sustainability in the venue designs.

Yesterday (Thursday) the Velodrome was visited by International Olympic Committee chairman Denis Oswald, Seb Coe, Chair of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), Olympic Delivery Authority Chairman John Armitt, two young leaders from Tower Hamlets and Greenwich and two local riders who are looking forward to using the venue in legacy.

Mr Oswald said: “Every visit to the Olympic Park provides us with yet another impressive sign of the progress that is being made here and today’s visit is no exception.

“As an amateur cyclist, it’s fantastic to see the finished track in London’s new Velodrome. I’m sure that athletes like Chris Hoy will love competing here in 2012 and that future generations of cyclists, like the two youngsters with us today, will be inspired to continue cycling thanks to the quality of the facilities that will be available to them in legacy.”

With the Velodrome cycling track in place and the external timber cladding nearing completion, work is underway to install the venue seating and complete the infield and changing rooms areas, with the venue on track to be completed early next year. After the Games, a road cycle circuit and mountain bike course will be added to the Velodrome and BMX circuit to create the Lee Valley VeloPark, combining cycling facilities across all disciplines in one cycling ‘hub’.

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Shaun Dawson, chief executive of Lee Valley Regional Park Authority which will own and operate the Velodrome in legacy, said: “It is clear that this will be an inspirational venue for cyclists across the country. After the Games we’ll ensure the VeloPark leaves a rich legacy for cyclists of all levels and disciplines. We are working closely with British Cycling, the host boroughs and other agencies to develop legacy plans that provide opportunities from introductory sessions through to elite training and create an all year round vibrant and sustainable cycling venue.”