Preparation for Swimming Team Trials Buoyed by AIT-Omaha's Logistics Experts

USA Swimming’s Team Trials kick off on Sunday, June 26, marking the third time in a row the competition has been held in Omaha, Nebraska. The quadrennial affair featuring 1,800 elite swimmers is hosted by the Omaha Sports Commission. The Commission relies upon the experts at AIT Worldwide Logistics’ Omaha office as their primary logistics partners when executing the massive event.

The Second Wave

With the dismantled eight-lane warm-up pool having been successfully delivered to AIT-Omaha’s warehouse, attention turned to the delivery of the ten-lane competition pool supplied by Myrtha. Arriving in eight 40-foot ocean containers from Genoa, Italy, the competition pool components – which included 20-foot lengths of steel, heavy piping and more – were painstakingly transloaded on the 17-acre AIT-Omaha site. More than 5,000 square feet were used for staging alone in AIT-Omaha’s 250,000 square foot warehouse.

Components for the competition pool stored in AIT-Omaha's 250,000 square foot warehouse.

Transloading pipes on site at the AIT-Omaha facility.

Diving Right In

Delivery of components for both pools began a full month in advance of the first qualifying heat. On May 26, the AIT-Omaha team unloaded the first trailer at the CenturyLink Convention Center and Arena. Moving in and placing components for a pair of temporary competition-sized pools in a confined indoor space created a number of unique challenges. Four mechanical pumping and filtration systems were required: one main system along with a back-up system for each pool. The extremely delicate systems weigh in at 10,000 pounds each and demanded careful maneuvering through the twists and turns of the arena’s interior. Placed on a special steel sled and guided by a pair of skilled forklift operators, each unit spent more than one hour traveling the final 150 yards from trailer to placement.

Outside the CenturyLink Center, one of the four pumping and filtration systems begins the methodical journey to final placement.

Piping staged outside the CenturyLink Center.

A separate crew was responsible for the assembly of the pools while the AIT-Omaha team ensured that the required components arrived intact and in the prescribed order. A prefabricated steel foundation was assembled first, followed by the pool’s base and steel walls. Over the course of 11 days, the warm-up pool was erected in the Convention Center’s Halls A and B as the competition pool took shape in the arena. While the assembly crew was busy making 20,000 welds and screwing in 22,000 bolts during the construction phase, AIT-Omaha co-workers were on hand to support the effort by continually running materials, keeping the floor clear, retrieving “hot” parts and positioning last minute components into place.

The competition pool begins to take form inside the arena.

Steel panels and bracing form the walls of the competition pool.

A view from the upper reaches of the CenturyLink Arena.

The athetes' warm-up pool being built in Halls A and B of the CenturyLink Convention Center.

The warm-up pool's primary pumping and filtration system - along with its' redundant twin unit.

On Your Mark, Ready and Go

Final decking, matting and lighting were set in place and the pools were filled with approximately one million gallons of water each. Myrtha’s design includes a new innovation being used in the U.S. for the first time: movable head walls that could be adjusted after filling, thus ensuring that the lengths would be a hyper-accurate 50 meters.

AIT-Omaha is proud to support America’s dreams. Best wishes to all the swimmers who are competing this week for a coveted spot on Team USA!

Coming next week: The AIT-Omaha team flexes their supply chain muscles to support the fans attending the Swimming Team Trials.

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