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Monday, 12 February, 2001, 22:34 GMT
Odyssey to go interactive
Odyssey
Attendances at the arena have topped 100,000
The next phase of the Odyssey millennium project in Belfast is getting ready to open its doors to the public.

It is the first science and technology interactive site in Ireland.

The centre hopes to inspire future designers and engineers.

Known as W5 - whowhatwherewhenwhy - it takes its place alongside the 10,000 seat indoor arena which is home to the Belfast Giants ice hockey team.

Speaking on Monday, chairman of W5 Tom Nolan said it was "unique both in terms of design and creativity".

At a news conference ahead of the March official opening, Mr Nolan said: "We aimed to create a 'wow' factor and we believe we have exceeded our expectations.

Attractions

"At W5 we hope to release the spirit of discovery, curiosity, fun and knowledge in everyone.

"Our desire is for W5 to be known not so much as a place but as an experience".

Among the many attractions, visitors will be able play music on a laser harp, build their own model racing car and race it on a track, make their own animated cartoon or construct bridges or their own robot.

The 600,000 sq ft Odyssey complex is one of the largest entertainment and leisure construction projects ever undertaken in Northern Ireland.

Attendances at the Odyssey arena have topped 100,000 after just 18 events and two months of business.

Executive Director Nicky Dunn said: "It's well in excess of our projections."

She said the Belfast Giants remaining home games and upcoming concerts by Westlife and Ronan Keating have already sold out.

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See also:

02 Dec 00 | Northern Ireland
Giants felled by Eagles
27 Dec 99 | Northern Ireland
Millennium odyssey takes shape
06 Mar 00 | Northern Ireland
City gets skates on for ice hockey
02 Oct 00 | Northern Ireland
Millennium odyssey to employ 600
03 Dec 00 | Northern Ireland
Top night at Odyssey arena's opening
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