Northern Ireland is to get its first Olympic-sized swimming pool, the Sports Minister has announced.
The 50 metre pool is to be built in Bangor and is expected to be completed in time for the London Olympic Games in 2012.
Nelson McCausland said: “The project will go a long way towards addressing Northern Ireland’s need for world-class sporting facilities and will deliver a sporting infrastructure previously unavailable.”
The facility is to be built by North Down Borough Council, which has been awarded a £15m investment by DCAL.
Mr McCausland added: “I am pleased that we have reached this point which will allow the project to move forward towards its construction phase, which is currently on target for completion in 2012 and which will create much-needed construction jobs.
“This will be Northern Ireland’s first Olympic-sized swimming pool. As a regional centre of excellence, it will be a state-of-the-art facility to be enjoyed by all the people of Northern Ireland.
“Sport is essential for our young people, and DCAL’s investment in elite sports facilities is not just about the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, it is about creating a sporting legacy for our young people so they feel inspired to play sport.”