MAY 10, 2007
Valencia deal is conditional
The deal for Valencia to hold the European Grand Prix for the next seven years is conditional on the regional council president Francisco Camps winning an election later this month. If Camps is successful the race will go ahead next year on a street circuit which will run around the port area and up towards the city centre. It is believed that the local government has agreed to pay $35m a year for the event, although in most Ecclestone contracts there is annual increase of around 10%. If this is the case the race will end up costing more than $60m a year by the end of the deal. The city has spent huge amounts for the America's Cup and the tourist industry is booming with 1.6 million visitors in 2006, nearly five times the number who came in 1992. The city now has better travel connections, more hotels, conference halls, museums and art galleries and expects to finish this year with more than 2m visitors.
The planned race track will run close to the new Palace of the Arts complex, a $334m development which will include several museums and other attractions. This is located in the Turia Gardens, a drained river renovated into a park in the 1990s. There are also ambitious plans for new skyscrapers which they hope will give Spain's third biggest city a much highjer international profile.
The race track will also run around the inner harbour and will include a section over a bridge at the entrance to the harbour area.
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