A huge artificial wave pool may help make Perth a top surfing destination

Australia is known to have some of the world’s best surf towns. Perth is not one of them. But an artificial lagoon may soon offer ideal conditions for hanging 10 Down Under all year round.

Developers at Wave Park Group are planning their lagoon, Urbnsurf Perth, for 2018, in an area called Alfred Cove, just off the Swan River. The facility will consist of a 5.7-acre and 4.4 million-gallon wave pool, a climbing wall, parkour path, skate park, and artificial beach, with a café, bar, and clubhouse on the side.

“Perth has amazing beaches, but is widely recognized as having quite poor surf conditions for most of the year,” Wave Group founder Andrew Ross tells Digital Trends. “And, in fact, several of Perth’s beaches are closed to surfers for long periods of the year. So the ability to deliver waves consistently, year-round, to Perth’s 100,000 plus surfers, would be a major improvement.”

Urbnsurf Perth won’t be the first wave pool. Last August, a giant artificial wave park called Surf Snowdonia opened in Wales. Just a few months later, celebrity surfer Kelly Slater launched his own wave pool company with the world’s first barreling wave. Both Surf Snowdonia and Urbnsurf use wave-generating technology developed by Wavegarden, which can generate impressive waves but hasn’t quite mastered the art of the barrel.

This might not be an issue, though, as Wavegarden’s technology can generate suitable waves for both amateurs and experts. And while Ross touts the consistent and controlled waves’ accessibility for beginners, he insists that Urbnsurf Perth won’t be restricted to novices.

“The lagoon can be seen as a ‘driving range for surfers’, or a ‘gym for surfers’ allowing them to practice maneuvers over and over until they perfect them, and to remain fit so they are ready for epic conditions on the coast, or their next international surf trip,” he says. “Also, with surfing now admitted as a medal sport for the 2020 Tokyo Games, we see this type of facility as being fundamental to the progression and improvement of elite surfer’s performances heading into the next games.”

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