The International Swimming Hall of Fame in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will get a major overhaul in the next few years.
The proposal from Leisure Recreation Concepts Inc. would ?expand and modernize the existing aquatics facility and Swimming Hall of Fame to make it more interactive and visitor- friendly,? said Michael Jenkins, founder/president of Leisure and Recreation Concepts, based in Dallas.
LARC?s proposal, submitted to the city of Fort Lauderdale, which owns the ISHOF facility, includes plans for an aquarium, waterpark and five-story parking structure. In addition, the main competition pool would be redeveloped to present evening water mist shows, and one of the other two existing pools would be relocated to the roof of the parking structure, which would also include a restaurant.
Jenkins said the city has accepted his proposal and that his firm is turning to the next phase. Funding must still be worked out, and Jenkins estimated costs between $51 and $72 million. Completion is expected in early 2010.
ISHOF opened in 1965. Its mission is to ?promote the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life and the water safety of children.?
Bruce Wigo, president/CEO, said he hopes the remodel will reflect the mission of the organization. ?I?d like to see everything tied to the goal of inspiring people to swim,? Wigo said. ?We want this to be the best showplace for swimming on the planet, and when ISHOF was developed it was unique. I think the proposal still needs work, but I am optimistic that we will have a facility that stands out.?