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Pool in aquatic centres review

DELWYN DICKEY
Last updated 05:00 26/11/2013
Swimmer
POOL PERHAPS: After years of pressure an aquatic centre may be on the cards for northern Rodney.

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The lack of a public swimming pool has been a bone of contention in northern Rodney for years.

About 20,500 people live in a 20km area around Warkworth and that's expected to reach nearly 30,000 in 20 years.

The Mahurangi College pool in Warkworth has some public access outside school hours but is limited, as is the pool at Rodney College in Wellsford which has a key system and includes weekends.

An alternative to a public pool is the flooded quarry at the old cement works on Warkworth town's outskirts.

It's a popular spot for picnics and swimming, though safety concerns have been raised.

People have been hurt while climbing surrounding trees to jump in and the water is very deep.

More than half the submissions to the 2011-13 Local Board Plan endorsed the notion of an aquatic facility or learn-to-swim pool for northern Rodney.

Consequently, the Auckland Council is considering a feasibility study as part of a review of council-owned aquatic centres.

The council is trying to come up with a plan for investment in aquatic and recreation facilities as part of the next review of its 2015-25 long-term plan.

Sport New Zealand estimates a minimum of one 500sqm pool with expected use commonly being in the range of 40,000 to 100,000 visits a year.

A needs assessment will be done first, followed by a feasibility study then a business case.

The Rodney Local Board will have to endorse each step and the final decision remains with the council.

An online survey closes on February 8 through aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/haveyoursay or email questions to RodneyPool Survey@auckland council.govt.nz for information.

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- Rodney Times

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