Modernising Trinidad and Tobago’s sporting infrastructure remains top priority for the government over the next fiscal year.
So said Colm Imbert, Minister of Finance, during Monday’s presentation of the 2024 annual budget.
He highlighted that, over the past year, “The Hasely Crawford Stadium (Mucurapo) was substantially refurbished at a cost of $90 million to accommodate the recently held 2023 seventh Commonwealth Youth Games in August.”
Imbert confirmed that the “legendary” Mahaica Sports Complex in Point Fortin, with a seating capacity of 1,795, had been completed at a cost of $80 million, and reconstruction and rehabilitation of Skinner Park in San Fernando was also completed. It now has a seating capacity of 3,000 in its covered stands, and another 3,000 in uncovered stands.
On existing and future projects, he said, “Construction is under way to restore and put back into the service, the modernised, redesigned version of the historic JP Smarts Velodrome in Palo Seco.”
Imbert added that the Maloney Community Swimming Pool was completed at a cost of $12 million and the D’Abadie/Malabar Swimming Pool, to be commissioned in November, at a cost of $11 million, “will provide new recreational activities to the surrounding communities.”
“These will join the pools at Soogrim Trace, Laventille; Coconut Drive, Morvant; San Fernando; Diego Martin; and soon-to-be constructed La Horquetta and Biche facilities in providing an explosion of activities in water safety and watersports competition across the nation.”
Last year, the allocation was just over $760 million.