INDIANAPOLIS -- The IU Natatorium held its grand reopening Tuesday afternoon, showcasing $20 million worth renovations.
Executive Director Michael Howe, says it was time to make upgrades.
“Well, the benefit is the facility had not been renovated or had any major renovation done in nearly 30 years. So, if you imagine your own home. Not doing much maintenance in over 30 years, and you’re going to need some major repairs. And it really brought our facility back to world class,” says Howe.
The upgrades, completed over the course of nearly two years, included the diving tower as well as a new roof, heating and cooling system, pool deck, pool filtration system, lighting, skylights, bulkheads, and starting blocks; new doors, windows and drywall in the east and west concourses; an expanded pro shop; modernized locker rooms; and other mechanical repairs.
The natatorium is also the state’s first zero-waste athletic facility. That means 90 percent or more of all waste is recycled or composted. The upcoming U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Diving Trials -- June 18-26 -- will be the first Olympic event held in a zero-waste facility.
Ryan Vaughn, president of the Indiana Sports Corp., says swimmers love the natatorium.
“Well, you actually swim faster in this pool. It’s taken some of the best features from pools all around the world and really put it into one. Specifically, the depth, the temperature of the water the depthness of the gutters, the way swimmers don’t necessarily run into their own wake. It allows them to go faster because there’s less resistance,” says Vaughn.
The IU Natatorium is open to the public as well.