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News

Plans approved for £38m Winchester leisure centre with 50m swimming pool

Plans to build a £38m leisure centre and 50m swimming pool in Winchester have been given the go-ahead.

Winchester City Council’s (WCC) planning committee recommended approval for the scheme at a meeting on 30 October and the committee will formally issue approval over the coming weeks.

Designed by LA Architects, the Winchester Sport & Leisure Centre will house a 50m swimming pool, teaching pool and splash area, a health club with a 200-station gym floor, two large studios and an indoor cycling studio.

Sports facilities include a multi-use sports hall, squash courts and climbing wall.

There will also be a day spa with a hydrotherapy suite and eight treatment rooms.

According to the council, the design brief for the centre includes making it "as sustainable as possible" and the council is aiming for an excellent BREEAM rating.

Sustainable features to be included in the design will include air source heat pumps, solar panels and a combined heat and power system.

Last month, WCC announced it had chosen Willmott Dixon to build the centre.

“It is absolutely fantastic news that the project has been granted planning approval," said WCC councillor Lisa Griffith.

"This outcome reflects all of the effort and work that has gone into our thorough and inclusive engagement and resulting high-quality design.

“There is still some more detailed work that needs to be done but this is such a positive outcome for the project and we look forward to starting work to deliver this fantastic facility.

Mike Lawless, director of LA architects, added: “As the architects and lead consultant on this project, LA is delighted that the Winchester Sport & Leisure Park has passed this key planning milestone.

"The journey from the start has been one of engagement and dialogue with the people of the Winchester District in the development of the design that will now move forward.

"We will continue to develop a high-quality, elegant and sophisticated leisure centre for all people, and one that encourages as many forms of activity and social interaction as possible.”

Building work on the centre is expected to begin in early 2019 with completion due in early in 2021.

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