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  1. #1
    bi-winning
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    We the people ... Hamilton Velodrome - Gone with a Whimper

    From Canadian Cyclist: Canadian Cyclist - Hamilton Velodrome - Gone with a Whimper

    Quote Originally Posted by Canadian Cyclist


    Posted by Editor on 10/15/11


    Quietly, with almost no fanfare, Canada's best hope for a permanent indoor velodrome died at a Hamilton Council meeting last Tuesday, when councillors voted against increasing the city's share of costs involved in building the velodrome from the original $5 million. Less than one hour later, TO2015, the Pan/ParaPanAm organizing committee, released a statement that it would be looking for alternative sites. The statement from TO2015 reads:

    The Toronto 2015 Pan/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee (TO2015) acknowledges Hamilton City Council's decision to cap their contribution at $5 million towards the building of a four-season velodrome at Mohawk College.

    However,this contribution, while generous, does not represent a sufficient financial commitment to go forward with the plans to build this velodrome in Hamilton.

    TO2015 would like to thank the City of Hamilton for their hard work in developing a strong four-season velodrome proposal and the due diligence of their committees to evaluate this proposal.

    As a result of Council's decision, TO2015 will pursue discussions with other municipalities who have expressed interest in this significant legacy facility.

    This high-calibre facility remains a vital component to the Pan/Parapan Am Games legacy. The velodrome will attract future elite, and amateur national and international competitions, allow Ontario-based athletes to train in their home province and give the surrounding community access to a world-class facility.

    TO2015 is looking forward to working closely with its community partners to help ensure a velodrome is delivered on time, on budget and on scope.

    The 2015 Pan Am Games velodrome facility has seen its estimated cost soar from an original $11.5 million budget to around $40 million. The original proposal was clearly underfunded for a permanent facility, which was a requirement that Own the Podium (OTP) and the Canadian Cycling Association (CCA) demanded; rightly so, given the past history of organizers putting together temporary facilities and then selling them off (1999 Pan Ams) or letting them fall into disrepair (Winnipeg and Victoria). However, rather than working on plans to bridge the funding gap, Hamilton spent months arguing over the stadium, which was the only real interest those in power had through the whole process.

    Hamilton as a location for a velodrome was both the right choice and the wrong one. Right because it had successfully hosted the 2003 Road Worlds, and has a long tradition of both cycling excellence and superb places to ride. Wrong because Hamilton had no real interest in a velodrome - all the Mayor and other factions wanted was a new stadium for their Tiger Cats football team (and that in a controversial site); and putting together a package of venues that included the velodrome increased the likelihood of getting federal and provincial funding (that would otherwise be unavailable) to build this stadium. The budget for the stadium has soared as high as $125 million - enough for three world-class velodromes.

    Cynically, this faction figured that they could put up with two weeks of international competition to get a stadium that is used a dozen times a year for a sport that has no Olympic or international relevance. We know this is true because Hamilton originally submitted a bid for the 2010 Commonwealth Games that did not include track cycling at all. They only backtracked when we published an article that was picked up internationally, and a number of Commonwealth federations stated they would not vote for a bid that did not include track cycling.

    A Hamilton Spectator article after the vote included the quote: Councillor Brad Clark pointed out that the Hamilton Tiger-Cats - not the city or its amateur athletes - are the main victors of Hamilton's Pan Am debates: "The Tiger-Cats, the professional sports team, was the one group that got everything they wanted. That's a little bit difficult to take." (See the full article Here)

    TO2015 says that they are looking for proposals from other communities interested in hosting the velodrome, but the time frame is exceedingly short - the end of November. This is an organization that has fallen down on the job. They have not pushed hard for a velodrome; instead of getting behind it with funding guarantees or, at the very least, a clear indication that a velodrome is a top priority, they have made vague statements in support, or issued threats to Hamilton Council.

    Unlike every other facility being built for the Pan/ParaPanAm Games - the stadiums, tracks, pools, etc. - the velodrome would be a unique structure in North America: the only Olympic-level facility on the continent for a sport that offers ten medal events, equally divided between men and women. This alone ensures that the velodrome would become the training centre of choice for Canadian and U.S. squads, as well as an almost permanent fixture on the World Cup circuit.

    In addition, the velodrome facility envisioned would offer multi-sport support to Olympic sports in Track and Field, Volleyball, Badminton and others. It would also fit well with stated healthy lifestyle goals, with proposed introductory programs for youth, to get them riding bikes in a safe and controlled environment.

    I have no doubt that something will be cobbled together in time for the 2015 Games - the successful bid included track cycling, after all. However, at this point it is looking more and more likely that we could end up with the type of temporary structure that was not supposed to happen this time. There are indications that Milton, Mississauga or Markham could step into the breech, and even a suggestion of London - where the Forest City Velodrome program operates successfully.

    What needs to be done now is increase pressure on TO2015 to ensure that they stick to the permanent legacy facility promise. They have a $2.5 Billion budget for the Pan Am Games; it's not too much to ask that a fraction of that goes towards a cycling track.


    If you wish to contact TO2015, the CEO is Ian Troop, and they can be reached at:

    Telephone: 1 (416) 957-2015

    Fax: 1 (416) 957-3999

    E-mail: info@toronto2015.org
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.


    Shorthills Cycling Club

  2. #2
    Ms. Monster
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    Sucky.

  3. #3
    Team NFI
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    Let's see, so far that is Track and Cycling that has been driven off. What's left??
    www.teamnfi.blogspot.com



    Depression...can eat a sack of manure and die.

  4. #4
    X-Ray Guy
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    Just makes me happy I don't live in Hamilton anymore. Hope we can still get a world class venue built in the gta

  5. #5
    GAME ON!
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    hamilton (city council) is a joke. this city has been slowly dying for the past 25 years and nobody seems to give a ****. who wants to come here? who wants to live here? nice place to drive through on the way to burlington.
    RIP Adam Yauch

    "M.C. for what I AM and do, the A is for Adam and the lyrics; true"

  6. #6
    Team NFI
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    Quote Originally Posted by saturnine View Post
    hamilton (city council) is a joke. this city has been slowly dying for the past 25 years and nobody seems to give a ****. who wants to come here? who wants to live here? nice place to drive through on the way to burlington.
    Hmm... have you lived in Kingston? Ugh.

    Some positives of the area...

    riding scene
    Niagara Escarpmet= DH
    Cafe Domestique
    Clan Monster
    It's not Kingston
    Kelso and such are close

    Okay.. now how to arrange Mac to need a replacement coach for their program.
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    Depression...can eat a sack of manure and die.

  7. #7
    Dorkimus Prime
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    Quote Originally Posted by saturnine View Post
    hamilton (city council) is a joke. this city has been slowly dying for the past 25 years and nobody seems to give a ****. who wants to come here? who wants to live here? nice place to drive through on the way to burlington.
    Wow. Burlington? I'd saw off my little toes with a rusty hacksaw before moving to that characterless suburb.

    Hamilton's core is bringing in jobs, 2 great schools, the Bay. Really, if someone carpet bombed Burlington, what would you miss? Mapleview?
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  8. #8
    GAME ON!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    Wow. Burlington? I'd saw off my little toes with a rusty hacksaw before moving to that characterless suburb.

    Hamilton's core is bringing in jobs, 2 great schools, the Bay. Really, if someone carpet bombed Burlington, what would you miss? Mapleview?
    i'm no fan of burlington, but i know burlingtonians (burlingtonites?) can't wait to get their BMWs through this city as fast as they can.
    RIP Adam Yauch

    "M.C. for what I AM and do, the A is for Adam and the lyrics; true"

  9. #9
    X-Ray Guy
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    Hamilton is just in a rough transition. Its major industry is changing with the world. Steel is not the big deal. I believe health care is the biggest employer now in that city.

    Anyways, i see the velodrome going to areas that have money to spare or more cooperate/communal support....oakville mississauga or maybe milton. I don't see Ford putting toronto into the running.

  10. #10
    Workin for the weekend!
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    LOL... Burlington is pretty vanilla.

    Hamilton's city council is full of lifetime politicians who are consistently empowered by buttheads. The problem with politics right now is that the good people don't want to get involved in the mess, so it leaves those postions (Mayor, Premier, PM) to candidates that really wouldn't belong.

    Thankfully the dummys who run Hamiton couldn't get their ***** together fast enough to spend another 20 million we don't have on a Velodrome... The Football stadium/track & field facility was their all time low. I wonder what's next?...

    Hamilton Health Sciences is one of the best places to have a medical problem solved, their staff is pretty good.

  11. #11
    bi-winning
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enduramil View Post
    Hmm... have you lived in Kingston?
    I'd love to hear more about why you dislike Kingston. I ask because a company I'm interviewing with has a location there.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.


    Shorthills Cycling Club

  12. #12
    Team NFI
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkj__ View Post
    I'd love to hear more about why you dislike Kingston. I ask because a company I'm interviewing with has a location there.
    Depends on what one wants to know.

    Big hassle unless you are into smoking, drinking, eating, and procreating exessively is the long drives to do anything. To do any cycling events you are faced with the long 2 plus hour drive to Toronto. But that is also a reflection on how the Toronto to Hamilton area is the centre of the universe of Ontario cycling.

    Only reason we are here is because of Joely's job. Which got her foot in the door to varsity level coaching. Now it's a wait to move to another position closer to Toronto.

    I could go on.
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    Depression...can eat a sack of manure and die.

  13. #13
    Team NFI
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Todd- View Post
    ... The Football stadium/track & field facility was their all time low. I wonder what's next?...

    It was a low but not the money side.

    Track Canada walked away from the deal because they would not compromise and say yes to a half arsed temporary track facility. Basically the Ti Cats would get a whole new facility while once the Pan Am's where done the track was basically to be scrapped.

    Track Canada stuck to their position and are now getting a new international standard facility near York Uni. Funnily enough it's already the home of a Track Canada training centre. Thank you Charlie Francis.
    www.teamnfi.blogspot.com



    Depression...can eat a sack of manure and die.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
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    Did track 1 session at Forest City Velodrome today. Had a blast! $30 for three hours of instruction and riding. Hopefully we can still get a permanent velodrome in the gta area, if not Hamilton.
    Eric

  15. #15
    Team NFI
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    Thanks to Mysty for this.

    Funny how all this is falling apart when the job of Ontario Minister of Sport is vacant. And has been for some time.

    Scroll down to the Oct 26th post.
    Sport 4 Ontario - Provincial Sport Organizations Council

    Gee..stuff like Pan Ams falls under this. I recall the big awards banquet in 2005 where the whole Quest for Gold program was launched. Long term infrastructure was mentioned.. the usual support sport dog and pony show.

    I think I'll not say more so as not to upset the sensitive types.
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  16. #16
    Dorkimus Prime
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    As a hockey Dad I see most of SW Ontario's rinks. There is a quad pad in Milton that has a running track around it. I believe Hasmilton is building a new quad. why would Hamilton not snatch the free cash and put the velodrome over the rinks? I think a solution could have been found in Hamilton.
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  17. #17
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    Mebbe Hamilton council isn't so dumb - I haven't been paying attention, but haven't heard about any seriious proposals from anyone else so far. Milton wants to have one, as long as it is totally funded by the private sector and they want to build it on unserviced land.

    I think if nobody else wants to pay to build one, Hamilton might be back in the running with an improved funding formula.

  18. #18
    Team NFI
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    As a hockey Dad I see most of SW Ontario's rinks. There is a quad pad in Milton that has a running track around it. I believe Hasmilton is building a new quad. why would Hamilton not snatch the free cash and put the velodrome over the rinks? I think a solution could have been found in Hamilton.
    The running track we have mentioned here is not a run of the mill track that you jog around for fitness. It is a international level track. Best example would be to see the one at York Uni.

    The closest facility that is international regulation for cycling and track is.....California.

    It's pretty sad really our current state of affairs for sport in Ontario. You'd think that that the day's of the Scarborough Optimist's Track program making do on the Riverdale track and hill where long past. Reality is we are pretty much exactly at that point. The athlete's performing despite the fact we keep throwing them under the bus when it comes to support.. not $$ but building facilities.
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    Depression...can eat a sack of manure and die.

  19. #19
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    I had a chat with Milton's mayor last Saturday. He was keen to make the velodrome happen. He mentioned that some private money was also interested. (think Peter Giligan the owner of mattamy homes and avid cyclist)

    The plan would be to build on the site of the new university south of the hospital.

    I am optimistic this could happen.

  20. #20
    humber river advocate
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    the reality is how much of the community will be able to utilize a velodrome? a tiny percentage. it is much better for the community that projects like garage monsters trails get funded and expanded. as well as urban pathways, community employment/training/maker fairs, urban agriculture, etc.
    bolton trail info
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  21. #21
    sock puppet
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    if Peter wants to build it - it will happen...

    maybe i can do some lobbying...

  22. #22
    pin it
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    the reality is how much of the community will be able to utilize a velodrome? a tiny percentage. it is much better for the community that projects like garage monsters trails get funded and expanded. as well as urban pathways, community employment/training/maker fairs, urban agriculture, etc.
    Perhaps they can build the Velodrome on a nice provincially significant wetland

    http://www.deathofawetland.com/

  23. #23
    X-Ray Guy
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    the reality is how much of the community will be able to utilize a velodrome? a tiny percentage. it is much better for the community that projects like garage monsters trails get funded and expanded. as well as urban pathways, community employment/training/maker fairs, urban agriculture, etc.
    I think it would actually get a lot of use seeing how the OCA/CCA work out of the David Bradley Center on the McMaster Campus. At least they were when I was there a few years back.

  24. #24
    humber river advocate
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jawz View Post
    I think it would actually get a lot of use seeing how the OCA/CCA work out of the David Bradley Center on the McMaster Campus. At least they were when I was there a few years back.
    that the general public can access? i think not. the reality is that it will be so out of reach for the majority of the population. i don't think a penny of public money or a square foot of public land should go for such a project. if someone wants to cough up the private land/dough and run it like a country club... knock yourself out...
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Perhaps they can build the Velodrome on a nice provincially significant wetland

    http://www.deathofawetland.com/
    A friend of mine along with her entire subdivision are tied up in a dispute with Mattamy Homes. Their subdivision was built with a nice park in the middle, which was quietly rezoned for high-rise condos a couple years after everyone moved in. From what I've heard it's not going well for the residents since the local city officials are in the bag.

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