Aquatics – Swimming – Diving – Water Polo

In 1844, Native Americans introduced the front crawl Human swimming stroke at a swimming competition in London.

Atlanta and Tulsa are similar in that neither city had a suitable Olympic Natatorium during the bid phase for the Olympic Games.

The 2016 IOC Candidate city bid package listed a minimum natatorium seating capacity of 12,000 seats for Swimming. The athlete headcount is 136 athletes for diving, 800 athletes for swimming, 104 athletes for synchronized swimming, 260 athletes for water polo, and 110 for triathlon, for a total of 1,410 aquatics athletes.

For the Atlanta 1996 Olympics, a suitable Olympic swimming facility did not exist. A natatorium was built on the Georgia Tech Campus. During the 1996 games, the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center hosted 14,600 seats on temporary bleachers for the Olympics, which were removed after the games. It currently seats 1,950. 151,476 tickets were sold for swimming, and 22,051 sold for synchronized swimming.

Like Atlanta during the bid phase for the Olympics, Tulsa does not have a suitable Olympics swim facility. There are two main campus universities in Tulsa that could host an Olympic natatorium. Discussions would have to be held with The University of Tulsa and Oral Roberts University as to post games utilization, and Title IX scholarship support for the facility.

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 Another possibility is to place the Natatorium at the River West park, adjacent to the proposed light rail line. This would allow area residents to easily use the facility after the Games, and could address the opening and operation of annual summer Tulsa public pools.