Major construction will begin on the £73m Sandwell Aquatics Centre in the New Year, which will host the swimming and diving events at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games
Councillors are set to sign off funding and contract agreements for the Sandwell Aquatics Centre at Londonderry Lane in Smethwick at a meeting on 20 November.
Work to prepare the site is already well advanced with the main building work set to start in January as planned.
After the Commonwealth Games, the building will become a leisure facility for Sandwell residents for decades to come, together with a brand new urban park, football pitch and children’s play area.
Sandwell Council is contributing £27m to the Sandwell Aquatics Centre, with £38.5m coming from the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games budget. A further £7.6m is funded by external partners including Sport England, Black Country LEP, Sandwell Leisure Trust (SLT) and University of Wolverhampton.
Sandwell Council had already budgeted to build a new leisure centre for Smethwick and can now provide a much bigger, improved facility at a similar cost to the authority – thanks to additional funding brought in by hosting the Commonwealth Games.
The development of Sandwell Aquatics Centre will not only inspire residents to get active and live healthier lifestyles, but it will also boost the local economy and bring job opportunities to the borough.
The final budget of the project reflects updated costs for groundworks, construction prices and contingencies built in by the council and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games budget.
When complete, the centre will feature a 50m Olympic-sized swimming pool, a 25m diving pool and a studio pool along with 1,000 permanent spectator seats. Additional seating will be added on a temporary basis for the Games.