In the summer of 2015, an exciting new facility will open in Osaka’s Minami district at the current Dotonbori canal.
The canal will be transformed into an 800m outdoor pool with tap water pumped into it in an attempt to liven up the area. The entire project is estimated to cost about 4 billion yen (around SGD$50 million) and bring in about 3.3 billion yen in annual revenue. Entrance fee for adults will be priced at 2000 yen for the first hour. Part of the reason Osaka is setting out to build this new facility is because they believe that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will probably not do too much for the prefecture as it will for the metropolis where the events will be held. But at an annual revenue of over 82% of its budgeted expenses, it seems a worthy investment.
While the estimated cost for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is about 7.5 billion yen and the event is expected to create an economic effect of 3 trillion yen, of the 7.5 billion yen invested in the Olympics, 3.7 billion yen will come from… (get ready for Singaporeans’ favourite word…) taxpayers’ money, while the remaining 3.8 billion will come from private funding such as investors, sponsors, etc. On the other hand, the entire 4 billion yen for the outdoor pool will be from private funding. This will thus be a very welcomed investment for the people of Osaka.
I’d definitely go down to the pool when it’s ready.