Crows aim to (fly) high with new training center



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Adelaide Aquatic Center Image: afc.com.au

The Adelaide Football Club that competes in the Australian Football League – nicknamed the Crows – has divulged plans for a $65 million training facility which will come up in lieu of the Adelaide Aquatic Centre. The Adelaide Crows have been based at the city’s West Lakes for almost three decades.

ausleisure.com reports that the Crows’ confidential plans to restore the worn out Adelaide Aquatic Centre have already been presented to Adelaide City Council and the public. Soon, public consultations will begin.

A new administration and training base in North Adelaide have been presented by the Crows. The development also involves a two-story building with a gym and an upgraded oval in the Adelaide Park Lands on Barton Terrace West. The oval will not be fenced and the public can use the swimming pool.

As the Council will have to pick up a tab of $21 million over the next 10 years to refurbish the Adelaide Aquatic Centre, the idea to provide a community aquatic facility has been welcomed by all and sundry.

ausleisure.com further reported that introducing the plan to the Council, Crows Chief Executive Andrew Fagan informed, “We wish to relocate our training and administration from West Lakes to the city of Adelaide, in part to strengthen the connection with the city and the club.”

“Also, we’d like to be more centrally located within metropolitan Adelaide and to enhance the delivery of club and community services and programs, as well as more effectively to engage with our large fan base on a much more frequent basis. We see the opportunity for a large not-for-profit community organization and the City of Adelaide to come together to address the council’s ongoing issues regarding the aquatic center and deliver a new and modern sports and community center that increases amenity to the North Adelaide community and the broader City of Adelaide ratepayers as a once in a generational opportunity,” he said.

Though the Federal Government will be giving $15 million towards the development, it is still not clear where the remaining amount for the project will come from.

Fagan added, “We’re seeking to invest a significant amount of money into that aquatic center but the financial business model and financial model for supporting it hasn’t yet been defined.”

The action of AFL games moved from Football Park to Adelaide Oval – where the Crows are based and where they have a fan facility called the Crows Shed.

Football Park was sold to developers in 2014, and stands around it were knocked down in 2018.

The State Aquatic Centre opened at Marion in South Australia in the year 2011 following which the Adelaide Aquatic Centre was relegated to a lower position from its previous role as South Australia’s major aquatic sport facility.

Fagan said the new facility would not be an after-match venue like the Crows Shed, advising that the Crows would instead work with existing North Adelaide licensees.

Colonel William Light’s original plans for the city in 1837 included Adelaide’s Park Lands as “a place for public recreation”.

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