Sport Minister Hands Over Refurbished Aquatic Centre

Photo: Mark Bell Members of the Jamaican water polo team take part in a practice session at the recently upgraded National Aquatic Centre at the National Stadium in Kingston, on March 14, when the upgraded facility was handed over by Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange.

Story Highlights

  • The Aquatic Centre located at the National Stadium has been refurbished for the Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA) Swimming Championships to be held from March 16 to April 4.
  • The work, which was undertaken by the Sports Development Foundation (SDF) at a cost of more than $27 million, included the installation of starting blocks and timing pads, changing of filters, installation of a new pipe system and tiling of the pool interior. The agency also purchased new water polo equipment.
  • “This upgrading activity has dovetailed nicely into the work of the Organizing Committee for the CARIFTA Games. The intention of the Government has always been to bring all hands on deck to ensure professionalism, which would result in the required standards being reached at the organisational level and which will give our athletes their best chance of success,” she said.

The Aquatic Centre located at the National Stadium has been refurbished for the Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA) Swimming Championships to be held from March 16 to April 4.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, handed over the facility to Independence Park Limited on March 14.

The work, which was undertaken by the Sports Development Foundation (SDF) at a cost of more than $27 million, included the installation of starting blocks and timing pads, changing of filters, installation of a new pipe system and tiling of the pool interior. The agency also purchased new water polo equipment.

In her address, the Minister said the refurbishing work is to ensure that Jamaica’s hosting of the Championships is up to world-class standards.

“This upgrading activity has dovetailed nicely into the work of the Organizing Committee for the CARIFTA Games. The intention of the Government has always been to bring all hands on deck to ensure professionalism, which would result in the required standards being reached at the organisational level and which will give our athletes their best chance of success,” she said.

For his part, President of the Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica (ASAJ), Martin Lyn, said the upgraded facility will assist in boosting the sport of Aquatics in Jamaica.

“As a major sport in which Jamaica has been represented at every level, from local club meets to the Olympics and World Championships, we are pleased to be recognised with this new and modern equipment. We are grateful to the Ministry and the SDF for making sure that the sport of aquatics is fully represented at the highest level, starting with all these infrastructure inputs to support aquatics in Jamaica,” Mr. Lyn said.

Over 550 athletes are down to compete in the 33rd CARIFTA Swimming Championships in water polo (March 16 to 18), and swimming and artistic swimming (March 31 to April 3) at the Aquatic Centre.

The Games will conclude with open water swimming to be held on April 4 at James Bond Beach, Oracabessa, St. Mary.

The event is being held under the auspices of the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC).

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