Gold Coast to Host 2014 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships after Council Deal Agreed

By Community | November 11, 2012

Gold Coast are set to host the 2014 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships after the State Government and the city council reached an agreement to spilt the $41 million cost to redevelop the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre.

The last time Queensland hosted the world-renowned event was in 1987, in Brisbane.

The redevelopment will be completed in time for the Commonwealth Games, dousing speculation the swimming events might be held in Brisbane.

The Bulletin understands the Gold Coast City Council will hand over the first funding instalment before the State Government matches it.

It will see the pool more than double its capacity from 170,000 visits to 400,000 a year.

The project will include a new 10-lane, 50m competition pool, new learn-to-swim pool, elevated spectator concourse-viewing terrace, new change rooms, gym and toilet facilities, community meeting rooms, event facilities, permanent seating for 1000 people and refurbishment of the existing eight-lane, 50m pool and dive pool.

Commonwealth Games Minister Jann Stuckey, said: “This is a wonderful win for the Gold Coast and demonstrates how the Newman Government and Gold Coast City Council are working together to deliver this upgrade ahead of schedule.

“The 2014 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships will provide a great opportunity to showcase the Gold Coast, as well as bringing significant economic benefit to the city and the state.

“It has been more than 25 years since the Pan Pacs were held in Queensland and, thanks to this bipartisan collaboration, we will have the opportunity to highlight our expertise in hosting world-class sporting events ahead of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.”

Cr Tate said today’s announcement would bring confidence to Gold Coasters that the 2018 Commonwealth Games would deliver “significant legacy infrastructure” for the city. The project would deliver 350 jobs, he said.

“Moving the project forward for the Pan Pacs will also ensure we have world-class training facilities available for our elite swimming and diving squads for their preparations ahead of the 2016 Brazil Olympics and the 2018 Games,” he said.

“It also means the new facilities will be reopened to our community much sooner than originally scheduled.”

The State Government called for registrations of interest late last month from 26 contractors to undertake the redevelopment work.

A shortlist of builders will be invited to tender for the project and public consultation will take place in coming months.

Construction is likely to start in February 2013 and take around 16 months. The new Gold Coast Aquatic Centre will open to the community in Spring 2014 following the Pan Pacific Swimming Championships.