Milton Keynes Bowl development plan being drawn up
THE future of the National Bowl is being explored by top council bosses.
Proposals including a training ground for Milton Keynes Dons, a cycling track and the facility’s retention as a major events venue will be discussed by Milton Keynes Council.
The authority is currently preparing a Development Brief for the music venue, which has hosted huge acts including Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen and Bon Jovi over the years.
Badminton England has also revealed plans to move to a new £20 million facility at the Bowl. It is expected that an official planning application will be submitted early next week.
The council recently took control of the venue as part of a £32 million transfer of assets from the Homes & Communities Agency.
The deal, which went through last month, saw a number of high priority landmarks pass to the council’s control including the Bowl and the Coachway.
A council spokesman told the Citizen: “There is considerable interest in exploring options for the future development of the Bowl, ownership of which has recently transferred from the Homes and Communities Agency to the newly formed Milton Keynes Development Partnership.
“Due to the considerable interest in the Bowl site, the council is currently preparing a Development Brief for the Bowl and the adjacent Elfield Park, which will explore how proposals for a training ground for the MK Dons, a cycling track, and the retention of the Bowl as a major events venue can best be accommodated on one or both of these sites in a comprehensive way.
“Badminton England’s interest in the site has been well publicised, and we anticipate that they will shortly submit a planning application for their proposed development on part of the Bowl site.
“This will be accompanied by an application for a housing development at the current badminton centre site at Loughton which, if agreed, would be the enabling development to allow the new badminton proposal to go ahead at The Bowl.
“If agreed, this new development would provide improved facilities to support the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.
“The council has encouraged Badminton England to engage as widely as possible with members and local parish councils and we are aware that they have also held other information sessions in the local community.
“Any proposals will be subject to a viability assessment to show that they are realistic and sustainable. This assessment will, of course, be carried out in parallel with consultation on the Development Brief.”
Last year he told this newspaper: “As part of our International Sporting City status, the strategy allows us to look at the Bowl as a potential site.
“It’s a very under invested part of Milton Keynes. If you think about what we’re planning to build there – changing rooms, offices and an indoor area – these things can be used to support the concerts and events at the Bowl.
“Our ambitions for the Bowl are very exciting, but there is a lot of history and interest in the site and we have to ensure we get everything right in order to try and satisfy the Milton Keynes stakeholders.
“We can’t grow as a football club without a new training ground. It’s as simple as that.
“Woughton has served us very well but the EPPP ruling for an exclusive training facility automatically places restrictions on us as Woughton is, and rightly so, a multi-sports community facility.”
And we revealed in October how Badminton England is planning to move to the Bowl.
The proposed facility, earmarked for the site known as the north east car park adjacent to the V4 Watling Street, would include a 3,000-seater arena, a minimum of 16 court indoor badminton hall, a new fitness club, administrative accommodation, athlete accommodation and associated car parking space.
If approved it would be opened by the spring of 2015.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Milton Keynes
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 6 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: North west