The Olympic Park Aquatic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil will open on July 25th, following its final FINA inspection.
After hosting the Maria Lenk Trophy in April, which served as Brazil’s second Olympic qualifying meet, the Aquatic Stadium was closed for renovations that were found necessary during the competition. Maria Lenk, which served as a test event for the facility, was closed to the public, allowing only athletes, coaches, officials, and athletes’ families to attend.
Air quality and the lack of a forced-air ventilation system was the most common complaint during the competition. The Aquatics Stadium was built with no air conditioning system, relying instead on “natural ventilation” to circulate fresh air throughout the pool and stands. Rodrigo Garcia, Rio 2016 sports director, told Globosport that a forced air ventilation system would not be necessary as temperatures outside will be much different in August than they were in April, but both FINA and the Brazilian Swimming Federation have requested that fans be installed inside the natatorium.
Ricardo Prado, general supervisor of all water sports during the Games, was present during the FINA inspection, though neither party has commented yet whether the requested ventilation updates were made. The Olympic Games will be the first event hosted at the Olympic Park Aquatic Stadium that is open to the public.
In addition to the renovations in the natatorium, the outdoor warm-up pool has been covered by a tent to keep out mosquitos, which were cited as a problem during the Maria Lenk Trophy. Before the Games begin in August the warm-up pool will also feature an air conditioning system.