Riding high on UK's glittering Olympic success, work is starting on site at Derby's iconic Multi Use Sport Arena.
A ground breaking ceremony will be held on Thursday (22nd November) to mark the start of work on the new Arena, following the signing of contracts and the announcement by Sport England of a £3 million investment through its Iconic Facilities Olympic and Paralympic legacy fund.
Councillor Repton, Cabinet Member for Leisure and Culture at Derby City Council, said:
"Following extremely successful Games, the City Council has made a very bold, decision to invest in iconic, 21st century leisure facilities. This represents a multi-million pound investment, which in these difficult times will create many temporary, part time and full time jobs. This is one of a number of initiatives that the Council is pursuing to do our bit to build this city out of recession.
Without doubt the resulting Leisure Strategy will to deliver the most exciting and significant leisure developments for the city in the last 40 years. The new state of the art facilities will act as a catalyst for positive change to meet aspirations of hundreds of thousands of people in and around Derby.
These facilities will be a shining beacon to inspire a new generation of sports men and women to embrace healthy lifestyles, to enjoy themselves and possibly become gold medal winners themselves!"
Sport England's Chair, Richard Lewis, said:
"There will be a fantastic sporting experience on offer for everyone at the Arena, from a world-class velodrome to a 12-court sports hall. No project has received a larger investment from our Olympic and Paralympic legacy fund and I’m confident this facility will be a source of pride for the region where local people will be inspired to develop a sporting habit for life."
We are delighted to announce that Bowmer & Kirkland is the successful contractor chosen to work on the project. The futuristic 14,500m2 (156,000 sq ft) Arena being built next to Derby's Pride Park Stadium and will include fitness and wellbeing facilities, a sports infield the size of 12 badminton courts surrounded by a national standards 250 metre indoor cycling track and well as a 1.5km outdoor closed cycle circuit.
Bowmer & Kirkland Director, Robert Kirkland, said:
"It is a great honour for us to be working on the first Olympic legacy project. As a Derbyshire-based company it gives us a real sense of pride to work with the City Council to build this exciting Arena which will be available to everyone in the region."
Councillor Repton, added:
"I'm extremely proud to announce the start of to one of the first Olympic Legacy project on British soil and delighted that we have contracted Bowmer & Kirkland whom I’m sure will deliver an outstanding facility."
The new facility will draws on the inspirational pull of London 2012. Derby and Derbyshire’s populations showed an abundance of enthusiasm and excitement to welcome the Olympic Torch Relay to our city and county on Friday 29th June. Over 80,000 people gathered to be part of the celebrations in our city and Derby showed the world a glimpse of just was it was capable of. The Multi Use Sport Arena is the first element of Derby’s iconic Leisure Strategy which will further show the world how Derby has been inspired by the Olympic spirit.
British Cycling’s Chief Executive, Ian Drake, said:
"It's fantastic news that work is about to start on the Derby velodrome. Cycling's sensational summer is inspiring thousands of people to get into the sport and this facility is part of the legacy from London hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games. British Cycling is working closely with the council on the project, including an outdoor closed road circuit, to give people riding at all levels across the region a facility that they can be proud of."
As well as offering a wide range of sports, Mace have designed the Arena alongside architects Faulkner Browns, to house an audience of 5,000 which will allow Derby to stage cultural events, exhibitions and conferences.
Mace Project Director, David Grose said:
"This ground breaking ceremony is the second of three major projects that Mace is working on with Derby City Council, which is one of our key clients in the Midlands. We are delighted to help deliver their leisure strategy and to be a part of this first legacy scheme. The relationships we have developed through the Council House, Multi Sports Arena and recently the Aquatic's Centre are based on a high level of customer service, good value and providing the right professional team for each specific project."
The ceremony will be attended by Commonwealth and European Gold Medallist, Donna Kellogg and veteran international track cyclist Geoff Cooke alongside representative from British Cycling, Derby County Football Club, Sport England, Bowmer & Kirkland, Mace and Derby City Council.
Construction will start on Monday 26th November 2012 and the Arena is planned to open by November 2014.