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Profound learnings and excellent networking at 2022 IAKS Study Trip

Visiting and learning from eight exceptional sports and leisure facilities on two days – this was the ambitious goal of this year’s study trip to Greater Vancouver, Canada. The tour was thoroughly planned by former IAKS Vice President Conrad Boychuk and realised with the kind support of our Canadian partners.

70 professionals from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the US joined the facility tour from aquatic facilities to community centres, including a visit to the Richmond Olympic Oval. The delegates were shown around by the managers and / or architects of the facilities and received useful background information.

Comparing to the situation from outside Canada, an expert from the UK stated that Canadian sports and leisure buildings are much more than just spaces for physical activity. They often combine traditional sports & leisure facilities with a wide range of community spaces such as music rooms, snooker rooms, crafts & art workshops, pre-school spaces, libraries. Designed to support a multitude of community programmes (from „over 55s clubs“ to youth and pre-school programmes) they generate buildings that are buzzing with activity even on a rainy Tuesday morning.

The description of the eight facilies is available at the event site and a wrap-up of the tour will be featured in sb magazine 4/2022, so today we share some impressions in the picture gallery.

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This is what delegates say:

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We saw inspiring buildings and had insightful conversations with industry colleagues from all over the world!

Irina Korneychuk
Partner, FaulknerBrowns, UK


Outstanding architecture experience with great colleagues that live the same passion for sports facilities.

Carlos de la Corte
ARENA events+venues, Brazil

I will go home with lot’s of ideas and energy! This is what the IAKS network is all about

André Flatner
Agency Manager for Active Lives, City of Fredrikstad, Norway


In Canada they are about 80 % community connection - centric, with fitness and sport far further down the list. This results in far higher engagement and use of services. Number 2 learning was - co-locate ice rinks and swimming pools together! The heat exchange benefits are excellent!

RJ Houston
National Manager – Aquatics, Royal Life Saving, Australia


I was just thrilled to see a facility, which is combining the need of senior citizens to do different kind of activities with a stunning swimming facility and great outdoor facilities for soccer, football, baseball and athletics. Thereby the facility has become a driver for a lot of activities between generations.

Poul Broberg
National Olympic Committee and Sports Confederation of Denmark