14 IAKS members from Spain visited the sports complex of the Mediterranean Ring in Tarragona, Spain on 26 September 2018. It was the main venue of the XVIII Mediterranean Games in 2018, with its Olympic-size swimming pool and the sports palace for 5,000 spectators.
The study trip was made possible by the collaboration of all public administrations including the City Council, the Provincial Council, the Government of Catalonia and the Government of Spain.
Representatives from the Sports Board of Tarragona City Council and the Catalan Council of Sports together with the operators and the engineers of the projects explained the genesis, development and technical details of the various sports and leisure facilities.
The main legacy of the Mediterranean Games will be the new Palau d'Esports Catalunya. Cooperation between architects and highly specialised engineers made it possible to develop novel structures and energy-efficient solutions with the help of BIM simulations. The required quality standard regarding the energy balance was almost zero (net Zero Energy Building = nZEB). Its achievement was demonstrated when the sports palace was monitored during the handball competitions.
The visit was rounded off with a walk through the neighbouring area of the sports complex and the athletics stadium, which had been completely renovated and supplied with a warm-up area immediately under the stand.
The 50-metre pool has been equipped with a mobile bridge providing greater versatility. It can be divided into two 25-metre lanes.
At the networking dinner the group shared the concerns and challenges that are currently facing the sports facility sector and society in general where sport is becoming increasingly important, especially in urban areas.
IAKS Spain plans to organise another study trip in future to bring together the Spanish IAKS members and to share experiences.