Construction work is underway on a new £3.7 million Olympic standard BMX track being built in Glasgow ahead of the 2018 European Championships - an exciting new multi-sport event bringing together some of the continent's leading sports.
The new BMX Centre at Knightswood Recreation Ground is the only permanent venue being constructed for use at Glasgow 2018 and will be Scotland's only World and Olympic standard BMX track. Work is expected to be complete by late spring next year, after which the venue will host a number of test events in the lead up to Glasgow 2018.
Completion of Knightswood BMX Centre will mean Glasgow is the only city in the world with venues capable of hosting all four Olympic cycling discipline events (BMX, MTB, Road and Track) within its boundary. The others are the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome at the Emirates Arena (Track), Cathkin Braes Mountain Bike Trails (MTB) and the city's streets (Road).
The facility, which is being funded by Glasgow 2018, sportscotland, Glasgow City Council and HSBC/British Cycling, will be open for use by the local community and will leave a lasting legacy for future generations. It will be the new home of the Western Titans BMX Club, who will relocate from their existing base in Clydebank.
The main track will accommodate riders of all ages and abilities, and will feature eight and five metre start ramps for advanced riders and competition use. There will also be a smaller pump track suitable for learners, and both tracks will be fully floodlit. In addition, the BMX Centre will feature changing facilities, a meeting room, a car park and an access road from Archerhill Road. The playpark and MUGA (multi-use games area) on the edge of the current blaes pitches will remain.
It will host its first major international sporting event in the summer of next year when Europe's top BMX riders go for gold at the inaugural European Championships.
Tickets for all Glasgow 2018 events including BMX at Knightswood BMX Centre can be purchased from http://glasgow2018.com/tickets and will be sold on a first come first served basis, starting at £10 for adults and £5 for under 16s and over 60s. BMX tickets start at £15 for adults and £7.50 for under 16s and over 60s.
Councillor David McDonald, Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: "Knightswood BMX Centre will be the latest addition to Glasgow's world-class sporting estate. As well as hosting major events the state-of-the-art facility will be open for community use, helping inspire a new generation of young cyclists to take up the sport, leaving a lasting legacy for future generations.
"The venue will be at the heart of the Glasgow 2018 European Championships - the biggest sporting event to be staged in Scotland outside of the Commonwealth Games. Bringing together some of the continent's leading sports, these Championships will celebrate an exciting new chapter in Glasgow's long and illustrious sporting history."
Sport Minister Aileen Campbell said: "Cycling is one of the many exciting sports that make up the 2018 European Championships, which will be screened across the globe and cement Scotland's reputation for hosting world-class events.
"When complete, the £3.7 million Knightswood BMX Centre will build on the success of the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome at the Emirates Arena and Cathkin Braes Mountain Bike Trails, enabling top athletes to compete in their discipline of choice and encouraging grass-roots riders of all ages and abilities to get involved in this great sport."
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive, sportscotland said: "It is terrific to see another world-class sports facility being developed in Glasgow which will not only allow the city to attract more events to Scotland, but will also add another important community asset to the sporting estate. That's why we were delighted to invest up to £500,000 of National Lottery funding in this project.
"Scottish cyclists have already made their mark on the world stage from Sir Chris Hoy and Katie Archibald on the track, to the incredible skills of Danny MacAskill. For young Scots inspired by their efforts, and those they will see during the European Championships in Glasgow next year, the Knightswood BMX Centre will give them the opportunity to hone their skills in a purpose-built facility which already has a club at its heart, and that's what makes this project so important."
To be staged every four years, the European Championships will combine the existing European Championships of Athletics, Aquatics, Cycling, Gymnastics, Rowing and Triathlon along with a new Golf team championships. The first edition will be held in 2018 in a unique sporting partnership between Host Cities Glasgow and Berlin.
This partnership will create a new event on the world stage elevating the status of European champions and attracting a potential television audience of up to 1.03 billion across the continent, with a wider audience via digital platforms. Attendances across Glasgow 2018 are expected to be in the region of 250,000.
• Glasgow 2018 European Championships: £2.8 million
• sportscotland: £500,000
• Glasgow City Council: £330,000
• HSBC/British Cycling: £50,000