Saxton Velodrome trustees Paul Jennings (left) and Rob Ford, oversee work on the venue. Photo: Jacob Page.

Saxton Velodrome – more than meets the eye

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Saxton Velodrome trustees, Paul Jennings and Rob Ford, admit they looked for so long at the plans for the new complex that they rarely come to check up on progress of its construction.

Both men were happy with what they saw on Friday with the $1.6 million project still on track for a scheduled December finish.

The project is a joint venture between Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council and the Trust, with the Trust expected to contribute $300,000.

Saxton Velodrome work continues with the track, rehabilitation area and an all-access underpass, all under construction. Photo: Jacob Page.
Saxton Velodrome work continues with the track, rehabilitation area and an all-access underpass, all under construction. Photo: Jacob Page.

“I’m not up here often checking in progress, as you look at the plans for so long trying to get the project off the ground that you have an idea in your head already of what it must look like, but to see it coming along well is exciting,” Paul says. Rob believes the key to the facility would be that the whole community will be able to use it for many things.

“There’s going to be a rehabilitation area where people can rehab injuries, I’m sure speed skaters will use it and the ramp-way and underpass has been done with the consultation of the Halberg Foundation.”

It’s hoped a new lot of Nelson and Tasman track cyclists can emerge, having made their start in the sport on the track. Paul says the Velodrome Trust is still looking for financial contributions but the response had been “hugely positive”.

“It is still on schedule but there are plenty of variables with a construction project like this,” Paul says. “The real icing on the cake will be when the surface actually goes down, which is one of the last things that will happen.

“From there, it will be transformed from something that looks like dirt into something that’ll look great and something we hope the whole community will enjoy.”

Paul says the Trafalgar Park track lasted 100 years and there is no reason the Saxton Velodrome couldn’t last the next century.

The Trust wished to thank the Tasman District Council, Nelson City Council, Rata Foundation, Lion Foundation and Mainland Foundation for their support during the entire process over the years.