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Christchurch to build four new aquatic facilities

13 September 2006

Christchurch to build four new aquatic facilities

The Christchurch City Council is to build four new indoor aquatic facilities in the next 14 years, providing city residents with year-round access to recreational activities at first-class aquatic facilities.

Details of Christchurch’s first city-wide Aquatic Facilities Plan were released today (Wednesday, 13 September) by Mayor Garry Moore at Jellie Park, the redevelopment of which is the first project under the new Plan.

In launching the Plan, Garry Moore said the Council had experienced phenomenal growth at its pools and leisure centres during the last few years, achieving a record 4.1 million visits in the 2005-06 financial year.

“This figure is equal to every resident visiting these facilities at least 10 times throughout the year, helping contribute to a healthy, active city.”

He said the Aquatic Facilities Plan was the Council’s commitment to providing residents with access to a city-wide network of indoor aquatic facilities that will be developed to meet the changing needs of the city.

“The Council will spend $12 million redeveloping Jellie Park, establishing it as an anchor aquatic facility for west Christchurch, as QEII is for the east.

“Work is scheduled to begin on site late March 2007 on the 56-week project and be opened in May 2008, boasting four indoor pools, including a new 25m, eight-lane, 2m-deep-water pool suitable for aquatic sports, an outdoor pool and new fitness centre and aerobics suite.”

Garry Moore said partnerships had been identified as key to the success of implementing the new Aquatic Facilities Plan, and the first of these developments would be at Papanui.

Construction of a new pool complex will be on land owned by Papanui High School, with support from adjacent Northlands Mall. The Council’s contribution to this facility will be $8.5 million. “This is an important partnership that will greatly benefit the local community.

“Partnerships with schools have proven successful throughout other parts of New Zealand, while those with malls and retail hubs are viewed similar to multiplex cinemas because they attract large numbers to the retail area.”

He said construction of the Papanui Pool will begin later in 2007, being scheduled to open in early 2009. It will feature a 25m, six to eight-lane pool and children’s and toddlers’ pool and a fitness studio and gymnasium. These will be available for both school and community use.

The Council will also spend $1.5 million to build a shallow children’s pool at Pioneer Leisure Centre by 2010 to complete the suite of facilities. This pool will be important in providing swim education for children aged eight years and under.

Other facilities proposed under the Plan are a new aquatic facility in the south-west sector to be operational by 2018 and in east Christchurch by 2020. “This will give Christchurch an enviable network of aquatic facilities throughout the city catering for the needs of the wider community.”

The Plan was developed following extensive community and key stakeholder consultation, providing the framework that will guide and inform Council decision-making as every five years it reviews the Plan.

“The exact location of the last two facilities will be reviewed in line with development of the city, although possible locations are the Hornby or Halswell area and Woolston or Linwood area,” Garry Moore said.

ENDS

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