One of the strategic goals outlined in the Ministry of Sport's Strategic Plan 2011-2015 is the need to encourage total participation in sport through the development of modern, well-equipped facilities to promote Trinidad and Tobago as a regional sporting hub. The Ministry has targeted swimming as a major area for development. Research has shown that the present pool infrastructure, that is, the six (6) State-owned 25 metre swimming pools are inadequate to meet the swimming needs of the population, and this inhibits the potential to maximise opportunities for training and leisure activities.
As such, to address the increasing demand for aquatic sport, the Government of Trinidad and Tobago approved the development of a National Aquatic Centre at Couva. This will entail the construction of a 50 metre pool which will serve as a training ground for international competition for the nation's elite athletes.
The objectives of the proposed facilities are:
- To support High Performance Sport
- To develop on an incremental scale, potential athletes for competitions at the national and international levels
- To host competitions at national and international levels
- To generate revenue for upkeep and maintenance
- To encourage sport tourism by facilitating programmes for visiting teams of international athletes during the winter months.
The design of the Aquatic Centre will in all aspects be consistent with recently built international aquatic centres and will offer Trinidad and Tobago the capability to attract international aquatic events, develop national water sports teams and offer the public, secure facilities in a safe and comfortable environment.
The Aquatic Centre will include the following facilities:
- The 50 metre swimming pool will provide facilities for the hosting of and training for international competitions
- A 50 metre warm-up pool and a 25 metre diving pool
- Total permanent seating capacity: 700 seats
- A Health area including an aqua gym, fitness room, sauna, Turkish baths (with water vapour production) and cold water pool
- Official / VIP, Media and Public seating
- Concession outlets (beverages, merchandising)
- Ticket booths
- Multipurpose room(s) for event organisers
The Aquatic Centre will also be designed with a level of comfort, convenience and service consistent with International Federation for Aquatic Sports (FINA) requirements for international events.
- Water Polo
- Synchronized swimming