Ceremony marks the start of construction of new sports facility | Wates

Wates Construction and the University of Portsmouth have formally marked the start of construction work for the new high quality indoor sports facility in Ravelin Park.

A ground breaking ceremony has been held to officially signal the start of work to create the facility which will include an eight court sports hall, eight lane 25m swimming pool, 175 station fitness suite, multipurpose studios, squash courts, climbing wall and a ski simulator.

Designed to be one of the UKs greenest sports facilities, the building aims to create new standards for sustainability and energy efficiency in indoor leisure facilities. The design stage has already received an outstanding certificate from BREEAM UK, the worlds leading sustainability assessment method. This is a major step towards becoming the first BREEAM outstanding sport and leisure centre in the UK which incorporates a swimming pool.

When open, the development will be accessible to students, staff and the community and is intended to be completed in Spring 2021.

The project will also involve improvements to Ravelin Park, including an entrance plaza between the sports building and the University Library, new pedestrian routes, an urban orchard, increasing the number of trees in the park and opening up views to the historic buildings on Museum Road.

Alec Jackman, Business Unit Director of Wates Construction Southern Home Counties, commented:

This event signifies an exciting point in the projects life as we formally mark building work commencing and the efforts of our dedicated site team delivering what will be an impressive, state-of-the-art leisure facility. This is an aspirational project for the university boasting ambitious environmental credentials and were thrilled to have been charged with its development.

The building was designed by the international design practice FaulknerBrowns Architects, appointed following an open design competition, and they are leading a team comprising: Max Fordham, Mott MacDonald and LDA Design.

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