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New Victoria Park Swimming Pool to open mid-September (with photos)

     The new Victoria Park Swimming Pool Complex will open on September 16 to continue the mission of the old swimming pool in providing a quality service to the public.

     The new swimming pool replaces the old pool, which ceased operation yesterday. Built more than five decades ago, the facilities of the old swimming pool had become outdated and did not meet the latest international standards. The Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) therefore initiated a redevelopment project in 2009 to construct a new swimming pool complex in the vicinity of the old pool, both to enhance the standard of pool facilities and provide a venue for high-level swimming competitions.  

     A spokesman for the LCSD said today (September 2) that the new swimming pool was designed to provide indoor heated pool facilities which could be used all year round. At a construction cost of about $800 million, the new pool meets international standards and with 2,500 seats provides the largest swimming pool spectator stand in Hong Kong. The new complex is suitable for hosting local, regional and international competitions of sports such as swimming, diving, water polo and sychronised swimming.

     To enhance the flexibility of the pool facilities, the 50 metres by 25 metres main pool is equipped with a movable bulkhead and a movable floor to suit various competitions, such as short course swimming matches.

     The multi-purpose pool, measuring 33 metres by 25 metres, is fitted with a movable floor as well as diving platforms and springboards of various heights to meet international standards for diving training and competitions. Although the multi-purpose pool has a maximum water depth of five metres, the LCSD will adjust the depth to 1.2 metres when it is opened for public use, to cater to the needs of different users including swimming learners.

     The new Victoria Park Swimming Pool is uniquely designed, with a streamlined exterior glass wall built alongside the trees in Victoria Park, creating curves and interesting patterns which give the pool a modern feel.

     The complex uses a variety of energy-saving measures including solar collectors, a solar heating system, a rainwater recycling system and more. Trees are extensively planted with landscaped areas on the rooftop and terraces.

     On the opening of the new swimming pool complex the old pool will be demolished and the site will be used to reprovision the handball court and skating rinks, which were demolished a few years ago to make way for the construction of the new pool.

     To allow more people the opportunity to visit the old swimming pool before it finally closes, in addition to the open days today (September 2) and tomorrow (September 3), the LCSD will also open it this coming weekend, i.e. September 7 and 8, from 9am to 9pm, for public visits.

     Furthermore, the LCSD has identified some items of historical significance and characteristics at the old pool, including the plaque unveiled by Sir Alexander Grantham and the stonework of the low wall facing the public entrance. The department is exploring the possibility of displaying some of these items at appropriate locations in Victoria Park for commemoration purposes. It is also working on an exhibition of old photos and information as well as a video production relating to the old swimming pool for public display and appreciation later this year.

Ends/Monday, September 2, 2013
Issued at HKT 18:28


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