THE first competition venue for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, the new $41 million Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, has been given the tick of approval by some of the coast’s best swimmers.
Swim star Melanie Schlanger, fiance Chris Wright and other local swim talent joined state officials and council members for an inspection of the Southport venue today.
Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey said the aquatic centre has been delivered ahead of schedule and is ready for the Pan Pacific Championships next month.
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“The redevelopment of the aquatic centre has been delivered earlier than originally planned to enable the Pan Pacific Championships to be held here in August,” Ms Stuckey said.
“The centre is stunning and with a backdrop like the Broadwater it’s sure to attract many international swimming events into the future.”
Among the new facilities at the centre is a 50 metre competition pool, a refurbished 50 metre lane training pool and diving pool and a dry dive facility, making the Aquatic Centre a major drawcard for future elite competitions.
The City of Gold Coast began its takeover of the facility in late June and is preparing to open the centre as a community facility in September.
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said the aquatic centre project had been an outstanding collaboration between the City and the Queensland Government.
“Gold Coast Aquatic Centre will be a signature venue for the Commonwealth Games and the City is proud to have partnered with the government to deliver it two years ahead of schedule,” said Cr Tate.
“The venue is spectacular and will be a show stealer when it makes its international debut hosting the Pan Pacific Swimming Championships (Pan Pacs) next month.
“On behalf of the City, I thank all the aquatic centre’s regular users and the local community for their patience and understanding during construction.
“The aquatic centre will not only be a world class international venue, it’s also a wonderful asset for our local community and we look forward to giving it back to the people of the Gold Coast after the Pan Pacs.”
Minister Stuckey said the $320 million investment in sport and community infrastructure in the lead-up to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games would provide long-term economic benefits for south east Queensland.
“We will deliver three new world-class competition venues and undertake major upgrades to a further eight venues in time for the 2018 Commonwealth Games,” Ms Stuckey said.
Local industry participation in the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre has been high with more than 90 per cent of the firms involved in the project from south east Queensland and 60 per cent from the Gold Coast specifically.
The managing contractor for the $41.39 million redevelopment was Watpac and the design architect was Cox Rayner Architects.