Jamaican News

Grange Opens Upgraded Aquatic Centre at the National Stadium

Photo: JIS Photographer

The Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, examines one of the newly installed starting blocks at the National Aquatic Centre at Independence Park Complex. Looking on are: Martin Lyn, President, Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica and Major Desmon Brown, General Manager, Independence Park Limited.

The Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment Sport today opened the upgraded National Aquatic Centre at Independence Park which will be hosting this year’s CARIFTA Swimming Championships.

Minister Grange’s comment came as she addressed a ceremony today at the National Aquatic Centre to mark the completion of the upgrading work.

Minister Grange commended the Sport Development Foundation, Independence Park Limited and the Aquatic Sports Association of Jamaica, formerly the Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica, for the work, commenting that the activity, “dovetailed nicely into the work of the Organising Committee for the CARIFTA Champs. 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 organizational level.”

She said the 27 Million Dollars spent for improvement of the Diving Pool, the installation of Starting Blocks and procurement of Water Polo equipment was an investment in the future of water sports in Jamaica.

She said there was good reason to make this investment especially since “we are well aware that this is where Alia (Atkinson) and others honed their skills and then continued their development elsewhere.

The work entailed the changing of the filters; the complete overhaul of the Diving facility and extensive upgrading of the Swimming Pool. Starting blocks and timing pads were installed, all designed to ensure that Jamaica meets world standards.

“My Ministry is prepared to make this investment to give our country and athletes the very best opportunity for sucess.

“The Sports Development Foundation will continue to take on critical projects of this sort, working with the Board and management of Independence Park Limited and under the guidance of the Ministry,” the Sport Minister said.

Miss Grange called on Jamaicans to support the CARIFTA Games which begin on March 15, noting that not everything will be in Kingston so those who cannot be in Kingston will have an opportunity to see the open water swims.

“I have been looking at the times of many of our swimmers and the performance of the artistic swimmers and our Water Polo team and we know that Jamaica can expect great things.



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