Heating of Arrowtown Pool to help swimmers keep active
Swimmers in the Wakatipu Basin will be able to keep lapping and splashing locally during the forthcoming temporary closure of Alpine Aqualand after Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) confirmed plans to heat the open air Arrowtown Memorial Pool and bring forward its opening date.
This follows Council’s approval in June of a $2.3 million budget for ceiling tile replacement and ventilation improvements at the district’s main aquatic facility located at Queenstown Events Centre (QEC) as part of the 2019-2020 Annual Plan.
Alpine Aqualand will close for approximately three months on Monday 30 September with Arrowtown Memorial Pool opening the same day.
Arrowtown pool usually opens annually between early December and the end of February with the sun heating water as it circulates through the pipe system. Installing an LPG heating system will enable the pool to operate with a target water temperature of 28 degrees Celsius.
QLDC Sport and Recreation Manager, Simon Battrick said the investment will help minimise disruption to the local community.
“Extending the traditional summer season and daily operating hours at Arrowtown has always been an option for us but any new heating system has naturally required a detailed examination of the technical, financial and compliance implications,” he said.
“Our aquatics team has worked hard to find a solution that enables recreational swimmers as well as local schools, groups and clubs to keep swimming while Aqualand undergoes essential repairs. It also means we can maintain a warmer temperature at Arrowtown rather than rely on the variable power of the sun.”
“I’d like to thank all our regular users and groups for their co-operation while we’ve been working through these options. Whilst we can’t replicate all the features of a large multi-pool facility like Alpine Aqualand we’re looking forward to opening Arrowtown Memorial Pool for everyone some two months earlier than normal,” said Mr Battrick.
All other facilities at QEC including Alpine Health and Fitness gym and group fitness studios, sports fields and the indoor stadium will remain operating during Alpine Aqualand’s temporary closure.
Swim members will have their payments suspended during this period (so they are not out of pocket) but will retain their ability to swim at Arrowtown and the pools at Wānaka Recreation Centre at no extra cost. Similarly, concession card holders will have the validity of their card’s duration extended while Aqualand is closed and can swim at both other facilities at no extra cost.
The QLDC Sport and Recreation team is also aiming to introduce a series of ‘dryside’ programmes at QEC that will enable swim members to keep active while the pool repairs take place.
From Monday 30 September and until Alpine Aqualand reopens, Arrowtown Memorial Pool will be open to the public from 6.00am-7.00pm weekdays and 10.00am-6.00pm on weekends.