Plans for the much-anticipated Halifax Leisure Centre have taken a significant stride forward with the submission of updated designs for planning approval.

Calderdale Council has meticulously honed the designs to ensure not only the financial viability of the project but also the delivery of exceptional leisure amenities at a central locale. These facilities are envisioned to be accessible and affordable, promoting the health and wellbeing of residents while simultaneously bolstering the local economy and aligning with climate action initiatives.

The refined blueprints have been tailored to navigate prevailing national inflationary pressures, striving to optimize cost-effectiveness without compromising on quality. Key features of the revised plans include:

  • A six-lane swimming pool complemented by spectator seating, alongside a learner pool boasting a dedicated viewing and seating area.
  • An upgraded eight-court sports hall.
  • A comprehensive 120-station fitness suite.
  • Two versatile multi-functional studios.
  • A dedicated cycling studio.
  • A children’s soft play and adventure area.
  • A tag game arena.
  • A vibrant café and community space.

Additionally, provisions have been made for wet changing facilities and a Changing Places facility catering to the needs of disabled individuals. Separate dry change amenities are earmarked for sports hall and gym patrons.

Environmentally-conscious elements have been integrated into the design to align with Calderdale’s Climate Action Plan and the borough’s ambitious target of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2038. Notable features include the incorporation of energy-efficient air source heat pumps to provide sustainable heating solutions.

The proposed design updates are slated for review under a ‘non-material amendment’ to the existing planning application. Pending approval, further refinement will follow, delving into the finer intricacies of the designs.

Cllr Tim Swift, Calderdale Council’s Deputy Leader, said; “Moving forward with the Halifax Leisure Centre plans highlights our ongoing commitment to an ambitious future for the town. One where more people can be active and healthy in modern, energy-efficient leisure facilities, which add to the wider regeneration that’s helping Halifax to thrive.

“We have balanced this level of ambition with work on cost reduction to keep most of the original designs the same, but with some tweaks that will enable us to deliver this exciting project within the available budget, given the significant financial pressures facing all councils.”

Cllr Jenny Lynn, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Services and Communities, added; “We know how important it is to have great leisure facilities in Halifax that all our diverse communities can use and afford.

“We are confident that the updated designs for the new Leisure Centre uphold the Active Calderdale mission to get more people active more often, supporting the clear link between physical activity and health and wellbeing, and reducing inequalities.”

The project received a substantial boost with a £12.2 million grant from the Government’s Levelling Up Fund, underscoring broader support for the endeavour.