Cycling Event Donates $478,000 to Milton Velodrome

NEWS RELEASE – August 8, 2012

Cycling Event Proceeds of $478,000 Donated to Milton’s Velodrome

 The Town of Milton is honoured to be the recipient of more than $478,000 for the Mattamy Cycling Centre – Home of Canadian Cycling. The funds have been raised from the eighth annual Tour de Bleu, Mattamy’s annual cycling fundraiser, to be held on August 12, 2012.

“On behalf of Milton Council, I would like to thank to all of the Tour de Bleu participants and Mattamy Homes for their support,” said Milton Mayor Gordon Krantz. “The funds raised during this event will greatly help us with our fundraising goals for the new Mattamy Cycling Centre.”

A total of 40 riders, including professional cyclist and 17-year Tour de France veteran George Hincapie, are participating in this year’s event. The cyclists will take one of three routes, a 100-, 150- or 200-kilometre route from Muskoka to the finish line in front of Milton’s Town Hall West (Victoria Park, 150 Mary Street).

Spectators are invited to cheer on the riders along the route and at the finish line which cyclists are expected to cross at approximately 4:00 p.m. 

“I am so excited that this year’s Tour de Bleu will benefit the new Mattamy Cycling Centre in Milton,” said Peter Gilgan, Founder and CEO Mattamy Homes.  “Our vision is for the new velodrome to become the premiere home of Canadian cycling in Canada and benefit the people of Milton and all of Ontario.  Hopefully one day a young rider in Milton who will train at the new centre will become a world champion.”

The proposed Mattamy Cycling Centre, located near Louis St. Laurent Ave. and Tremaine Rd., will be a 250-metre oval cycling track with banked corners and 1,500 permanent seats that will house cycling events for the Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games.  The new cycling centre will also provide residents with access to recreation spaces that are non-cycling related, including a gymnasium, walking track, fitness centre and multi-purpose space.

The Tour de Bleu, created by cyclist and philanthropist Peter Giglan in 2005, has raised over $4 million for community projects and initiatives, including the Trillium Health Centre and Sick Kids as well as other health, recreation and community charities. For further information on the Tour de Bleu, visit http://www.mattamyhomes.com/tourdebleu/About.asp.

For more information on the velodrome, visit www.milton.ca/en/townhall/velodrome.asp or call 905-878-7252, ext. 2581.

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For further information, please contact:  Jennifer Reynolds, Director, Community Services 905-878-7252, ext. 2180

Velodrome Public Session Last Night

On behalf of Regional Councillor Colin Best and myself, I would like to thank everyone who attended the public session on the velodrome last night.  The turnout was a lot better than many other sessions Ive held and that just goes to show people want information on the future of this endeavour.

We tried our best to provide as much up to date information as possible and answer questions of residents.  There is still some concerns we have and over the next few days I will be diving into the business plan and posting details on my site as I go through it.  Its an important decision to make and we as a council have to be fully informed before we make that decision.

If you would like to review the online version of the report (both links are about 9MB) you can check them out for some light reading 🙂

http://www.milton.ca/MeetingDocuments/Council/agendas2012/rpts2012/Milestone%20005-001-12%20Velodrome.pdf

http://www.milton.ca/MeetingDocuments/Council/agendas2012/rpts2012/Milestone%20005-001-12%20Velodrome_%20Part%20II.pdf

Here is a couple of articles from the Milton Canadian Champion courtesy of Christina Commisso & Matthew Van Dongen of the Hamilton Spectator.

Velodrome Concerns Raised

Make Velodrome A Go

Here is some coverage from CHCH News who came out to the Milton Sports Centre.

Year End Interview With Mayor Gord Krantz

Pan Am velodrome big issue going into new year

Mayor hopes to see funding commitment for indoor cycling track

From Christina Commisso, Milton Canadian Champion

Mayor Gord Krantz says he has learned more about velodromes in the latter part of 2011 than in his whole life.

That learning curve is expected to continue into this year, as the velodrome is one of many Milton projects on the agenda for 2012.

The long-serving Milton mayor told the Champion in a recent interview that he hopes to see a funding commitment for the indoor cycling track this year — one of his many New Year’s wishes.

“This is a huge international sport and it’s growing. There will be 20 to 25 international meets in Canada each year, and they could happen right here,” he said.

Tourism boom could erupt

The 74-year-old mayor said if the velodrome business plan is approved by Milton council and construction is given a green light, he envisions a hotel or two popping up in the immediate area and a tourism boom for the town. “Tourism is a huge industry in Canada, and we’re looking for our piece of that industry.”

The velodrome is closely tied to the Milton Education Village (MEV). The 150-acre parcel of land at Derry and Tremaine roads will serve as home to the cycling track and to a Laurier University satellite campus if Milton gets its way.

Krantz said he was hoping to see more movement on the MEV campus in 2011, “but I’m far from being naïve,” he said.

“The Province has a cash crunch issue…I can’t blame them for being a little cautious,” adding that he’d like to see the funding come through in the next couple of years.

“Where else are they going to get 150 acres of free land? The Province is roughly 60,000 (post-secondary) spaces short and here we are ready and able and willing to help.”

Mayor wishes for ground-breaking

The mayor’s final wish for the new year is a ground-breaking for the Milton District Hospital expansion, a long-awaited promise that came to fruition this past summer.

As for predictions for 2012, the mayor said one thing will be inevitable in Milton — traffic.

“I’ll apologize for that in advance,” said Krantz, pointing to the Main Street grade separation just east of Ontario Street. “It’s going to cause a disruption and I’ll be the first one to acknowledge that.”

Asked why the Town didn’t plan the construction pre-population boom when the traffic impact would be less intense, Krantz said there was simply no way to fund the $50 million, four-year project.

“Development charges are paying for a huge portion of the project,” he said.

Krantz said while Milton is far-removed from the financial crises taking place around the globe, he believes the Town could feel some of the pinch.

“The federal and provincial governments can have an indirect impact,” he said, adding that he wouldn’t be surprised if certain government services are downloaded to the municipal level. 

 

Council Eyeing Velodrome

From the Milton Canadian Champion By Christina Commisso

Council eyeing velodrome

The Pan Am Games velodrome has sparked the interest of Milton council.

The velodrome, an indoor track for cycling, is the only major Pan Am sports venue that’s still without a home after the City of Hamilton decided to cap its funding for the $45 million project at $5 million. Organizers, however, were looking for the host municipality to fund 44 per cent of the capital costs — about $20 million.

They’ve now reached out to communities who previously expressed an interest in hosting a Pan Am event, one of them being the Town of Milton.

“We did not go seeking this, they came to us to see if we could be interested,” Mayor Gord Krantz said during a committee meeting Monday. “I’m interested.”

However, Krantz said he wouldn’t be looking to the taxpayers to fund the local share of the project. Rather, it would be funded, if possible, through private partnerships.

The Town is proposing the Milton Education Village (MEV) location, a 150 acre-site at Derry and Tremaine Roads, house a permanent velodrome. If Pan Am organizers opt for a temporary facility, the Town is proposing the Derry Green Business Park or any existing vacant building in Milton.   

In a letter addressed to Krantz, organizers indicate they require a “shovel ready” site between five and six acres to be provided by the municipality by January 31, 2013.

Milton’s CAO Mario Belvedere pointed out the deadlines for the Pan Am site are similar to those of the MEV. Council has previously said the MEV would be shovel-ready by early 2013.

“Is that just a coincidences, or something we can look at more vigorously,” said Belvedere. “There are opportunities for project partnering by looking at other community partners who are already in place for the education village.”

But he warned that Hamilton had more than a year to work out site-selection and funding for the velodrome, and that still wasn’t enough time.

Milton has been given about a six-week window.

Organizers are looking for municipalities to express their interest and propose a site by tomorrow and a binding agreement to be signed with a host municipality by November 30.  

“Simply put, we haven’t had enough time to ask the appropriate questions,” said Belvedere.

Some of those questions include whether the interior of the velodrome could be modified to include other sports, what kind of operating subsidy would the Town receive to help with the ongoing costs of the velodrome and if the entire project can meet Pan Am’s tight timeframe.

Asked if the Town can meet the November 30 deadline, Belvedere responded, “absolutely not.”

“To be fair no one could meet those timelines. No one could put together a $40 million project in six weeks,” he said.

Krantz reiterated that he has no intentions of putting the Town’s finances in jeopardy and that the project would only move forward with private sector support.

 “There’s no doubt in my mind the Milton Education Village will be built in the next two, three, or five years. Will this fit in the college? I think it’s a perfect fit.”

He continued, “I’m looking 10, 20 years out to what the benefits of this facility may be.”

Krantz said three or four communities were approached by Pan Am organizers about the project.

While the committee voted express their interest in the Pan Am velodrome, several councillors raised concerns about the project.

“We only have six weeks for binding agreement. That’s not enough time for public feedback and that makes me nervous,” said Ward 8 Councillor Zeeshan Hamid.

He requested that the Town host a public meeting regarding the velodrome, but Belvedere said it’s best to wait and see if a private partner is found, as the velodrome wouldn’t move forward without one.

Hamid also raised concerns about ongoing operating costs.

Ward 6 Councillor Mike Cluett asked if there has been any indication from the Province regarding when MEV will move forward.

“There’s been no real contact at this early stage by the government or the ministry,” said Belvedere. “Prior to the election it was opinion of the ministry that they needed to move quickly on securing an additional 40,000 new spaces in the GTA, and that was a high priority.”

Ward 2 Councillor Greg Nelson said a velodrome would be a “hard sell” for downtown residents.

“With the hospital expansion and underpass underway, residents expect us to move forward with a razor-sharp focus,” he said, adding that he wouldn’t support funding the project with taxpayer dollars. “I hope we have Donald Trump or Richard Branson on speed dial.”

The velodrome will be an International Sports Federation-approved facility and will be used for Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games track cycling events and for training. The four-seasons velodrome will have a 250-metre track and will serve as the national training centre for Cycle Canada.

Belvedere said if organizers opt for a temporary site at the Derry Green Business Park, it would mean that area of town would receive water and wastewater services ahead of schedule. A temporary facility would be housed in a dome. When the games are over, the track would be removed and the dome could be used for indoor sports.

Mississauga councillors were expected to decide whether to bid on the velodrome at a meeting today.

A status report on the project will be presented at the November 21 Milton council meeting.