Lausanne’s World Archery Excellence Centre: For the Development of All Sports
A beneficial partnership for all
The World Archery Excellence Centre is set to become the hub for development of archery around the world. Former World Archery President and IOC Vice-President Mr. James Easton funded the base capital of FIDTA – the Foundation for International Archery Development – to coordinate archery’s growth initiatives. One of the foundation’s goals was to construct a facility in the Olympic Capital of Lausanne to act as a world-class venue and centralize international development activities. The idea began in 2008, the project was created by World Archery in 2012 and after two more years of planning, construction started in October 2014. The Centre officially opened on 2 December 2016 and was opened to the public in January of 2017.
The 6,200m2 building includes an indoor and outdoor archery range, office spaces, conference and meeting rooms, an athlete lounge, cafeteria and a fitness gym. Apart from hosting elite and recreational archery athletes, judges and coaches for training camps, seminars, courses and conferences, it will also be a multi-sport venue offering activities to the communities of Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud.
Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud received the title of Olympic Capital in 1994, not only because it is the host of the IOC headquarters, but also 57 international sports federations and organisations. In this partnership, the City of Lausanne provided a land to World Archery for the establishment of its Excellence Centre as well as administrative assistance. The Canton of Vaud provided financial support through its Foundation for Sports as well as administrative support, particularly in terms of immigration to welcome world-renowned athletes, coaches and referees of World Archery on the Swiss territory.
A beneficial partnership for all
Juan Carlos Holgado, Director of the World Archery Excellence Centre explains the mutual benefits of this partnership:
“The World Archery Excellence Centre (WAEC) benefits from its partnership and collaboration with the City of Lausanne in three primary ways. First, the City made the land on which the Centre is built available. Second, as we are located in the City of Lausanne we receive regular support from various different departments. Such as promotion, permits when events are hosted in our facilities, infrastructure or special occasion equipment needs (fences, benches-tables, podiums) or city management services (snow, parking for large events). Second, the Centre will benefit from the different sport programs designed by the Lausanne Department of Sport which aims to promote sport and its practice among its citizens.
However, it is obvious that the benefit goes both ways. The City will benefit from the Centre by an increase in sport tourism throughout the year from the events and activities we are organizing. Another benefit is brand awareness increase and free marketing for the City of Lausanne, the Olympic Capital, worldwide.
The WAEC and World Archery is pleased with the excellent collaborations we have had with the City of Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud. Since day one we have felt welcomed, supported and appreciated by the City and the Canton.”
Patrice Iseli, Head of Sport at the City of Lausanne, confirms Juan Carlos Holgado’s claims:
“For sure it is a great asset for our City and for the Canton to have such a prestigious establishment on our territory. As the Olympic Capital, we want to offer to the international sport federations that are based here not only the opportunity to establish their offices in our city, but also to collaborate with us to develop their sport. Because when they do so, it obviously reinforces the image of Lausanne as a real hub for the practice and the development of sport, and not only the administrative centre for sport.
A centre for the development of all sports, not only archery
Juan Carlos Holgado explains how he believes the World Archery Excellence Centre is good for the development of sport in Lausanne:
“The Centre recently opened in the beginning of December and is growing day by day creating new projects and activities. Even though our doors just opened, it is already evident that the Centre has contributed to the City of Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud’s sport development through:
Patrice Iseli agrees with Juan Carlos Holgado’s statement:
“Indeed, our population, our local sports clubs, schools and other local institutions will greatly benefit from the World Archery Excellence Centre. They have the opportunity to use the gigantic spaces of the facility for their events, meetings, etc. It is a great asset for the development of local archers, who can learn from the best in the world, but also for athletes of many other disciplines who can practice their sport here.”
Working together to overcome challenges
The World Archery Excellence Centre project was not brought to life without any challenges. But World Archery was able to overcome, particularly with the support of the City and the Canton authorities in some cases. Juan Carlos Holgado explains:
“The first challenge was to locate available land to build the centre. The City and the Canton helped us in finding the land and issuing permits on the condition the facility is used as planned. As the location offered required an indoor sport facility, changes were necessary to fit the urbanism plan.
The next challenge was to define internally what we wanted and build it. We had an idea, but the solution was not clear to us at the beginning. It was necessary to procure the right architects and construction advice to accomplish our dream.
Lastly, we needed funding. It was obvious that a construction of this size, especially in a country such as Switzerland, needed a large sized budget compared to our small International Federation. The World Archery President, Dr. Prof. Ugur Erdener and Secretary General, Mr. Tom Dielen, worked extremely hard to overcome this challenge and procure the necessary financial support to turn our dream and the vision of Mr. Easton and Dr.Prof. Ugur Erdener into reality.”
Communication: the key success factors of a successful partnership
Both Juan Carlos Holgado and Patrice Iseli agree on the key success factor of a successful partnership between a city and an international sport federation: communication.
Juan Carlos Holgado explains:
“I believe a close, direct and honest communication is a must when working as a team. Establishing good contacts and sharing common goals and visions to work together toward, it’s about finding synergies…that is for me, the first and most important part to achieve. We are proud of and extremely grateful for the level of collaboration we have achieved with the City of Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud and the confidence they have in us.
With every future project, we make an effort to collaborate with the city on how we can best support our host community and vice versa. Sport is a way to bring people together and promote healthier living and there is no better way then pairing up with a city to accomplish that.
The World Archery Excellence Centre is excited to give back to the city and its communities in return for what they have given our sport already.”
Patrice Iseli adds some elements that are essential to a successful partnership:
“I agree with Juan Carlos. It is extremely important that all the partners listen and understand each other’s reality. In the World Archery Excellence Centre, the communication has been great. It was also easier for us to understand the context in which World Archery operates as we work on a daily basis with the 57 international sports federations that are based here.
But I also want to highlight the fact that World Archery had a true will to connect with the local sports culture. This was a vital element to the success of this partnership, and it also made it easier for us at the City of Lausanne to convince our politicians to support the project. We definitely want to thank World Archery for their commitment to develop sport in the Olympic Capital.”
The World Archery Excellence Centre is a great example of a successful partnership between an International Sport Federation and a city. We hope it can serve as an inspiration for your city when partnering with a sport organisation to develop sport in your region.
For more information on the World Archery Excellence Centre, click here.