Madrid, 24 July 2009 – A top level delegation from the Madrid 2016 Olympic bid is on a fact finding mission to the FINA World Swimming Championships in Rome confident that plans for its own world class aquatics centre in the Spanish capital are well under way.

The Madrid bid CEO Mercedes Coghen, MD Antonio Fernandez Arimany and Deputy Mayor of Madrid, Manuel Cobo, are among the delegation attending the championships in Rome this weekend.

“Our new aquatics centre is already being built right next to what will be the main Olympic Stadium,” explained Mercedes Coghen, “and whether our bid is successful or not, it will be completed to provide world class facilities for the future.

“We believe that the swimming venue is one of the greatest strengths of our bid and that is why we are delighted to be here in Rome to learn as much as we can from the world body, cheer on our Spanish athletes and of course spread the word about what Madrid has to offer in 2016.”

Designed by Madrid architect Juan Jose Medina, the Aquatics Centre known as the “city of water” will be completed by 2011. It will have a total capacity of 26,700 and features include an innovative retractable roof.

The capacity by sport is:

• Swimming – 16,500
• Diving – 5,200
• Synchronised swimming – 16,500
• Water polo – 5,000 (heats) and 16,000 (final)

The venue would also be used for the Paralympic Games if the Madrid bid is successful when the IOC makes its decision on 2 October this year.

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