Maria Lenk Aquatic Center
The Maria Lenk Aquatics Center is an aquatics centre that is part of the City of Sports Complex, in Barra da Tijuca. It is part of the investments made by the city Rio de Janeiro to host the swimming, synchronized swimming and diving competitions of the 2007 Pan American Games. During the 2016 Summer Olympics it hosted group matches of water polo and the synchronised swimming and diving competitions. The name of the water park is a tribute to the Brazilian swimmer Maria Lenk, who died less than three months before its inauguration.
The water park was designed in accordance with established parameters and specifications of the International Swimming Federation (FINA). It is partially covered and includes an Olympic-sized swimming pool, an indoor heating and a tank for diving.
The complex has the capacity to receive about 8,000 people. The construction area is 42,000 square metres (450,000 sq ft). The facility has also been designed according to the specifications required to achieve the Parapan American Games of 2007, as well as environments and equipment ready to receive people with special needs.
In March 2008, the facility came under the administration of the Brazilian Olympic Committee, which has been involved in training for Olympic and Paralympic athletes, coaches and officials, as well as courses, conferences, workshops, gym and small schools of swimming, water polo, diving and synchronized swimming. Until now, the year 2009, the BOC did not do any sports activity on the site.
The lack of sports activities on site has been reinforcing the theory that the complex was a failed project that would prove difficult to maintain in the long run, funded by taxes from the state government of Rio de Janeiro. However, the park, as well as other facilities built for the achievement of the Pan American Games, was one of the major assets of the city's bid for the 2016 Summer Olympics.