– in the Scottish Parliament on 17th March 2011.
10. To ask the Scottish Executive when it expects Aberdeen’s 10-lane Olympic-sized pool to be completed. (S3O-13378)
I am delighted to be able to inform members that, at sportscotland’s recent board meeting, an award of £5 million to Aberdeen Sports Village Ltd for that project was approved. It is now for the council and its partners to take the necessary steps to ensure that the pool is delivered for the people of Aberdeen and the north-east. Work on the site is scheduled to begin in late summer and its completion is due in autumn 2013.
I thank the minister for her positive answer.
Does the minister agree that all the indications are that the tenders for the pool were very competitive, that the costs of the two additional lanes are substantially lower than was originally estimated and that, with the positive support of sportscotland and the Scottish Government, as well as that of Aberdeen City Council, the University of Aberdeen and some major private donors, a full 10-lane, Olympic-sized 50m pool for Aberdeen now looks to be both affordable and deliverable? For me, given that these are likely to be my final words in the chamber, there could not be more positive news on which to end my time in the Parliament.
I wish Nicol Stephen all the best. It was fitting for him to ask that question, as he has pursued the issue with rigour. It is my pleasure to be able to give him positive news about the confirmation of the money, and I am sure that he will want to join many of us in 2013 to see the magnificent facility open.
I echo the minister’s warm words. Can she confirm that the funding package that she has described is now wholly in place to allow the work to commence on schedule?
Yes, I can. As I said in my original answer, £5 million was awarded to Aberdeen Sports Village Ltd at sportscotland’s recent board meeting. As Nicol Stephen said, that came about because of the positive support from all partners and from private donations. The role of the University of Aberdeen has been very important, of course. I am sure that it is felt on a cross-party basis that what has happened is a cause for celebration.