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Battle for 2012 velodrome naming rights

by LLB Editor
16th Sep 11 9:24 am

Sky is going head to head with Westfield to secure naming rights for the London 2012 velodrome amid a bidding war that has attracted much interest.

Sky and Westfield have emerged from the pack as the early front runners in the bid to secure the rights once the Games have finished, according to reports.

The naming rights sell-off for Olympic venues is taking place in a bid to keep costs down for members of the public visiting them after the Games.

Sky’s direct links to cycling and Westfield’s location are said to have singled them out so far.

The velodrome is among the nominees for this year’s Stirling prize, and is widely regarded as the best looking of the Olympic venues. The Stirling prize is awarded to the best European building built or designed in the UK.

If the velodrome goes onto win the prize it will be an added bonus for whichever bidder secures naming rights.

Shaun Dawson, chief executive of the Lee Valley Regional Authority, said: “The velodrome has the exposure, and the profile and there are discussions, encouraging ones at the moment.”

Speaking at the London Assembly, he highlighted the case of the Manchester Velodrome – which was built for the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

The Manchester centre runs up annual running costs of between £200,000 and £300,000, however Dawson said that naming rights would bring that figure down at the London site when it came to the cost to the taxpayer.

Meanwhile, prices to use the Olympic venues post-Games will not exceed those at similar facilities within the same local authority area, according to Peter Tudor, director of venues at the Olympic Park Legacy Company.

For example, people wanting to pop for a post-2012 swim at the Aquatics Centre will be charged around the same as they would be at a local pool under current proposals.

Tudor added: “We are committing our operators to charge the average of host borough prices. I will be asking them [the successful operators] to match that.”

Members of the public wanting to play basketball and similar games at the multi-use arena will be charged a figure of around £7, according to Tudor.

After the Games have drawn to a close the plan is for the venues to pay for themselves, the Assembly was told. However venues not proving as popular as others will be supported with corporate events and sponsorship.

But when it comes to staffing and wages, the Olympic park Legacy Company will still lean on the taxpayer.

Figures have estimated that some 95 per cent of people using Olympic Park venues when 2012 has reached its conclusion will live or work within 60 minutes of the sites.

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