As part of their presentation ahead of a successful bid to host the 2023 World Aquatics Championships, Doha, Qatar has announced a plan for two main competition hubs.
Four of the six disciplines will take place at the Aspire Zone Complex, which is home to the Hamad Aquatic Center that hosted the 2014 World Short Course Swimming Championships. Swimming, synchronized swimming, diving, and water polo.
The main pool includes a massive video board and currently includes seating for 2,500 off-deck spectators (although it has previously been listed with a capacity of 4,500). The Aspire Zone Complex also has several multi-purpose arenas and a large stadium; FINA has not specified yet how exactly the complex will be used to host its first major long course championship.
From Doha’s side, Dr. Thani Al Kuwari, Secretary General of Qatar Olympic Committee, led the Middle East delegation and was successful in emphasising the added-value of his bid. “The FINA Family has been many times in Doha and everyone knows our true passion for organising top-events. Sport is an important tool for the development of our youth and of our country. Hosting the FINA World Championships for the first time in Middle East will be a great way to develop Aquatics on a global scale”, underlined Dr. Al Kuwari.
Open water swimming and high diving, meanwhile, will both take place near the iconic Museum of Islamic Art, on the shores of the Persian Gulf.
Much like they’ve faced in preparation for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in soccer, Qatar will have to contend with soaring temperatures for outdoor events for a meet that is typically, though not exclusively, held in the summer months. While winter water temperatures can be very cool (it is currently 66 degrees according to travel.org.ua), temperatures soar as high as 88 degrees in the summer. This points to either a planned technological solution to the high temperatures, or an off-season event similar to those hosted in Melbourne, Australia in March of 2007.