Derby

Derby velodrome plans move a step closer

Plans for a velodrome in Derby which was under threat are likely to be approved, the BBC understands.

The £28m development had been given the go-ahead by the city's Conservative/Lib Dem coalition but it lost control at the local elections.

The Tories decided to hand over final contract signing to the new Labour administration, who ordered a review into the development.

Labour councillor Martin Repton said he was "confident" plans will be approved.

The city council's ruling Labour cabinet will decide on the velodrome at a meeting on 11 July.

Mr Repton said provided the project meets Environment Agency guidelines and can be delivered within the £28m budget, plans would be approved.

"With the Olympic Torch Relay coming Derby on Friday 29 June and the eyes of the world firmly fixed on our city with regard to sport and physical exercise, I am delighted that the council cabinet is to consider the report recommending progress to the next stage of this important Olympic legacy project", he said.

A report will be presented recommending the selection of the preferred contractor for the construction.

The 5,000-seat centre, which would be able to host other sports, has planning permission for land next to Pride Park stadium.

Once complete, the facility will also feature a gym, function rooms, badminton and basketball courts and a cafe.

Planning permission was first granted in March with work scheduled to begin this month.

It had been hoped it would open early in 2014.

The city council said it had already started to take bookings for the development.

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