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Elite BMX facility gets Rotorua council support

News Release 
Tuesday 18 February 2014

International elite BMX facility gets Rotorua council support

London’s elite BMX facility is among a number of international designs being considered by Rotorua BMX club for a Rotorua based elite international BMX track.

Rotorua District Council’s Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee has given its support ‘in principle’ to proposals to build an elite international BMX facility on council land off Waipa State Mill Road.

The new facility would be built by the Rotorua BMX Club on land commonly referred to as the ‘Horse Paddock,’ and would replace the club’s current BMX track near the wastewater treatment plant off Te Ngae Road.

At this morning’s meeting of the council’s Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee, councillors heard that the existing track was subject to increasingly high maintenance costs because of its location in an active geothermal field, and was becoming difficult to maintain to standards that would attract high level events in the future.

The club proposes constructing an all-weather free-draining track with the potential to be “the best in the country” and would produce a design that meets elite international standards. Car parking, toilets and club rooms are also proposed at the site.

The Rotorua BMX Club anticipates the need to raise funds in the region of $600,000 for the project and would seek council assistance in approaching organisations for financial support.

At present there are only two elite level BMX tracks in the country, one in Auckland and the other in Wellington.

Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee chair Merepeka Raukawa-Tait said the BMX facility would not only support the council’s Rotorua 2030 long-term goal around ‘outstanding places to play,’ but would also support economic growth objectives by attracting visitors, and leveraging business opportunities and employment.

“With our city’s tourism infrastructure and the new facility in place, Rotorua could easily host major national BMX events which regularly attract 1000 or more competitors, or even international meets.

“This proposal fits well with our growing reputation as a world class biking destination, and complements our status as the country’s mountain biking capital.

“However the council’s support is one of ‘in principle’ only at this stage and there is a lot of work to be done, but it gives the BMX club a mandate to proceed with planning, design and a fundraising programme,” said Mrs Raukawa-Tait.

Rotorua BMX Club president Grant Butterworth said he was delighted with the council’s support for the club’s proposals.

“We’re looking forward to working closely with RDC on this project. It’s a really bold initiative but through a strong collaborative partnership with the council and other community partners we have the potential to create something really special for Rotorua and for our community.”

ENDS

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