By Duncan Mackay

Strathcylde Country ParkApril 1 - A total of £1.2 million ($1.8 million/€1.4 million) is to be invested in Strathclyde Country Park to help ensure that its Loch will be ready to host the triathlon competition during the 2014 Commonwealth Games. 

Half the money is to come from North Lanarkshire Council, with the other half coming from the Scottish Government. 

It will be used to construct a temporary dam, which will improve the Loch and make it fit for use in competition. 

Competitors in the men and women's triathlon events, who are expected to include Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee, are due to swim 750 metres in the opening leg of the event before cycling 40 kilometres and running 10km.

Several events in the Loch have had to be cancelled because of blue-green algae which can cause skin blisters, vomiting and abdominal pains.

Last August, the Great Scottish Swim, which was due to be held at Strathclyde Park, was cancelled because of health fears.

Great Scottish Swim Strathclyde LochGreat Scottish Swim organisers have moved this year's event from Strathclyde Loch after being forced to cancel the 2012 race because of health fears

Organisers have already announced that this year's event has been moved to Loch Lomond.

A spokesman for North Lanarkshire Council said: "In common with most open water areas, Strathclyde Loch suffers occasional, natural, microbial outbreaks which prevent some immersion sports taking place.

"The proposal to build a temporary dam to ensure a world-class event goes ahead unhindered is, according to the experts consulted, an entirely appropriate measure.

"The Commonwealth Games is a fantastic event and a massive opportunity to showcase North Lanarkshire to a global audience."

A spokeswoman for Glasgow 2014 added: "The water quality problems are not unique to Strathclyde Loch - blue-green algae is a problem in the majority of water spaces in the UK."

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