Having been closed to the public and operating at a reduced capacity since November 2021, Manchester City Council has finally announced that Manchester Aquatics Centre (MAC) will reopen its doors next week. After undergoing a £30 million refurbishment, with Phase 1 (the largest phase of the works) now complete, Manchester Aquatics Centre will reopen on June 26 just in time for hosting the World Para Swimming Championships, which will take place in late July.
The Manchester Aquatics Centre, located on Booth Street, has seen a significant refurbishment of its facilities and has undergone works to improve its energy efficiency. The refurbishment of the MAC will allow Manchester residents to have direct access to state-of-the-art leisure facilities including a Olympic-size (50m) swimming pool and 25m diving pool right in the city centre.
The Council has delivered upgrades to all areas and aspects of the building including improving all of the swimming pools, three new gym spaces all on one level, a new fitness class studio, a new group cycle studio and leisure water (including new splash pad facilities). Manchester Aquatics Centre also features new café facilities, health suite, and changing spaces with new accessible changing provision to support disabled people and those with additional needs, and new digital and sustainable technologies to provide a more modern and efficient building.
In line with Manchester City Council’s commitment to achieve zero carbon emissions by 2038, green energy systems and renewable energy sources have been implemented across the aquatics centre to reduce the MAC’s carbon emissions. The existing gas heating system has been replaced by high efficiency, all electric Air Source Heat Pumps and 1006 solar panels have been installed on the roof of the centre, alongside a battery system that will allow the MAC to use solar energy even on Manchester’s cloudier days.
Councillor John Hacking, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Skills, Employment and Leisure, said: “The reopening of the Manchester Aquatics Centre is a momentous occasion for the city and it’s wonderful to welcome people back to the newly renovated facility, one of the leading aquatics venues in the UK…Thanks to the Council’s large investment, the Aquatics Centre is now better equipped to suit the needs of our residents, who can now benefit from a wide range of brilliant sports equipment, aquatic upgrades, spa facilities and changing space – I would encourage anyone to go down to test out the new facilities.”
Andy King, CEO of Manchester Active, said: “The centre is a key player in contributing to Manchester’s reputation as an international city of sport and remains one of the most important legacy outcomes of the 2002 Commonwealth Games in the success of GB Para Swimming.
“Not only will we welcome back a thriving events programme with national/international reach and significant economic value to Manchester, but also over 700 school children each week via Manchester school Swimming Programme and over 900 people on public learn 2 swim programmes, plus up to 14,000 health & fitness members and over 70,000 students from both Manchester universities.”
Phase 2 of the Manchester Aquatics Centre refurbishment works will commence in September and will include upgrades to all basement areas, programmed over the next 12-month period.