New ice stadium in Almere: KNSB
Dutch skating association KNSB on Friday announced it has given the green light to Almere as its preferred location for the new speed skating stadium.
The KNSB chose the Icedôme as the new home for top-level speed skating over the Thialf stadium in Heerenveen and the new TransSportium in Zoetermeer.
The decision has sent shockwaves through the skating world. Heerenveen has played host to top-level competition since the 1980s and the province of Friesland has already allocated €50m to build a new state-of-the art stadium there.
The decision means Almere, which is closer to Amsterdam, will be the new training and competition centre for Dutch skaters and host an annual international event.
The KNSB says other international competitions could be held in Heerenveen and Zoetermeer.
Top skaters such as Sven Kramer, coaches and local government officials have already spoken out about the decision. Heerenveen and Zoetermeer are to appeal.