Several Olympic athletes expected to prepare for Paris 2024 in VRSA
Vila Real de Santo António Council is using revenue from its tourist tax to renovate the running track at the local Sports Centre.
The renovations will cost around €450,000 and are expected to last three months.
Says the local council, the new track will have eight running lanes and technical areas for throwing and jumping and will be certified for international competitions, meeting the requirements for high-level athletics competitions.
The ongoing works include the complete removal of the existing surface, which was “badly rundown” and will be replaced with a new one.
“The new surface will once again provide the VRSA Sports Centre with all the conditions for training and hosting national and international events, increasing the quality of what is offers and expanding the number of sports training camps,” the council says.
The local authority adds that the works will help attract pre-Olympic training camps for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games and will “strengthen the positioning of the Vila Real de Santo António Sports Complex” as a leading destination for training camps and competitions.
“When we invest in the Sports Complex, we are creating all the conditions to attract high-level training camps and competitions. This measure also represents a clear fight against tourism seasonality, paving the way for increases in hotel occupancy rates and the number of overnight stays in our municipality during the off-season,” says Álvaro Araújo, Mayor of VRSA.
“With the upcoming 2024 Olympics, the use of the track in the first months of next year will reach unprecedented levels, as many national and international athletes are preparing to choose Vila Real de Santo António to prepare for this world-renowned event, reinforcing the municipality’s position as a town of sports,” adds Álvaro Leal, Local Councillor in charge of Sports.
VRSA council says that between January and September 2023, the sports complex has already surpassed the number of training camps held throughout the year 2022 (January to December), adding that this shows “the growing interest in the facility and justifies the importance of the track renovation”.
Meanwhile, the sports centre’s shot put throwing area is also being revamped to the tune of €70,000.