£5m deal for Olympic white water venue builds legacy

 

The Olympic white water centre is set to become the first venue to negotiate a deal for its post-Games naming rights. Six months ahead of the start of the Games, the venue in the Lee Valley in Hertfordshire, which will host kayaking and canoeing events come July, is close to securing an agreement for around £5m for a 10-15 year term.

The white-water centre is run by the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, a part-publicly funded body, who will also manage the Velodrome and the adjacent BMX track and a hockey and tennis centre once the Paralympics are completed in September. The hockey centre will be moved from the Olympic Park itself and reassembled in the Lee Valley.

It is a significant step in the legacy for the venues, with naming rights identified as one of the key areas to prevent them needing to be propped up by public funding. The Lee Valley authority are also negotiating a naming-rights deal for the Velopark, which opens in 2013 and will include a network of mountain bike routes around the velodrome and BMX track. That should prove more lucrative.

The deal for the white-water centre – which the authority plans to be making a surplus by 2014 – will be a timely boost for the Olympic Park Legacy Company, who are seeking to sell the naming rights for the Olympic Stadium and the Aquatics Centre for around £10m a year. The OPLC have yet to decide how the monies earned from naming rights will be divided with the stadium’s tenants – still likely to be West Ham United despite concerns within the club over the proposed new rental agreement – and the company that wins the bid to manage the venue. Bidders have until the end of the month to submit their proposals.

For the Lee Valley park authority securing the naming rights deal for the white water venue, which cost £31m to build and was completed in December 2010, is another first. The course will also host the 2015 world canoe slalom championships, the first post-Games sporting event secured by one of the 2012 venues.

The white-water centre was also the first Olympic facility to open to the public – it’s open to the public until April.

Post-Games white elephants are a major issue for every Olympics, and naming rights are regarded as an important factor in avoiding them, especially as visitor numbers are likely to decline. The Chinese government has recently had to make up a £1m plus annual shortfall on the Water Cube, the spectacular venue for the Beijing Olympics swimming. That shortfall is predicted to increase in coming years. The Cube costs £10m a year to run. There has also been a marked fall in the numbers visiting the Bird’s Nest stadium over the last year.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable