The following press release was issued by the City of Fort Lauderdale on September 21, 2012
The renovation of the Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Complex – home of the International Swimming Hall of Fame – has received the critical go-ahead from the City Commission.
I’m pleased to announce that the Commission approved this week an agreement with developers that sets a maximum price for the project as well as a 2½-year timetable to complete construction. The new facility – with two Olympic-size pools and signature dive well – should open in early 2015.
These plans should revitalize the Hall of Fame complex as a destination for national and international swimming and diving events. The YMCA is interested in bringing back its annual national swimming championships, and Royal Caribbean has discussed regular diving performances from its cruise ship teams.
Under its agreement with the city, Recreational Design & Construction guaranteed a maximum price of $32.4 million for construction. The city has earmarked $25 million in beach redevelopment funds and would pay for the rest of the cost through revenue generated by a new parking garage that would be built with the complex. No general tax revenue will be spent.
The city’s Community Redevelopment Agency has been collecting funds from a small area of the beach for decades because it was once considered blighted. The money can be spent only on such beach redevelopment efforts.
The city selected RDC as the developer in January and has worked with the firm since to fine-tune the proposal based on public input. The agreement drops from consideration the development as part of the project city-owned land on the east side of A1A next to D.C. Alexander Park.
The new complex will include two 50-meter pools, a dive well, an instructional pool, a training facility, a Hall of Fame museum, a greenway and a park along the Intracoastal Waterway. Among the groups that endorsed the plan are the Hall of Fame board of directors, USA Swimming, USA Diving, the Beach Redevelopment Advisory Board and numerous residents and athletes.
RDC will now begin its engineering due diligence work, while the city commences negotiation of a lease with the Hall of Fame and the preparation of bond financing for the parking garage.
This will truly be a state-of-the-art facility, one that I believe will be a boon for the beach and tourism for years to come. Whether you’re a participant or a spectator, the new aquatic complex and ISHOF museum will provide events and activities for all to enjoy.
Issued By Charlotte Rodstrom, Fort Lauderdale Vice Mayor