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Innovation At Thermal Pools Nets Local Co. Award

Innovation At Thermal Pools Nets Local Company Award

Taking an innovative approach to the problem of keeping your feet warm while running between hot pools has earned a North Canterbury paving company one of the Canterbury Contractor's Awards.

Kreisel Contracting 1988 Limited has won the Canterbury Contractor's Award for work worth $50,000 or below, for its work at the Hanmer Springs Thermal Reserve.

As well as maintaining and replacing the paving at the pools, Kreisel Contracting has designed a way to keep the cobblestone pavers warm, even in freezing temperatures, by using the Thermal Reserve's hot wastewater.

"The problem is that during winter we have very cold conditions and the ground and pavers become frozen. While our customers love soaking in the thermal pools during this weather, when it comes time to get out their feet are in for a shock," says Graeme Abbot, General Manager of the Hanmer Springs Thermal Reserve.

Unable to find any documented designs to solve the chilly dilemma, Kreisel Contracting came up with a plan itself.

"We used a bit of Kiwi ingenuity and practised some fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants contracting. We also decided that at all times we must follow the KISS philosophy - Keep It Simple Stupid," says Hans Kreisel, owner of Kreisel Contracting.

Hans and his team located a wastewater sump and bought a water pump and a 50-metre coil of alkethene (which they bent using boiling water, sticky tape and a pipe bender). They then laid the alkethene underneath the pavers amidst fine sand, and ran the hot wastewater through it. The result was a lift in the average temperature of the pavers from zero to 14 degrees.

"Increasing the temperature of the cobblestone pavers not only increases customer comfort but also makes the pavers less slippery as well as prolonging their life. And all of this has been done without using any external energy supply," says Hans Kreisel.

Graeme Abbot says the trial, which was carried out around the hydro-slide area and children's pool, has so far been a complete success. He says it will continue for another six months while Kreisel Contracting investigates how to implement the solution in other parts of the pool area.

"When you get a company that provides such innovative solutions such as Kreisel Contracting, it's a pleasure being in partnership with them," says Graeme Abbot.

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