Pool users fed up

SHELLEY GRECO
Last updated 05:00 18/02/2014
Assid Corban

DISGUSTED: Assid Corban is upset at the terrible state of the pool.

Linda Cooper
TRYING HARD: Waitakere ward councillor Linda Cooper wants the pool recognised as a regional pool so that it can be funded as such.

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Users of the swimming pool at West Wave Pool and Leisure Centre are becoming increasingly frustrated with its lack of maintenance.

Disgruntled swimmers have complained of leaky shower fittings, graffiti-covered surfaces, permanently wet floors in the changing rooms and a lack of paint in the family and disabled changing rooms.

Waitakere ward councillor Linda Cooper says there are 120 urgent pieces of work to do on the pool but not enough money to do it.

"The local boards are being asked to help. It's very unfair to put it on just the local Henderson Massey Local Board.

"Any surplus from revenue should always go back into maintenance rather than going to other pools."

In 2012, all council-owned pools became free for young people aged 16 years and under. This has resulted in a smaller budget to manage the repairs and upkeep of the pool.

Glen Eden resident Marion Davis uses the pool twice a week.

"The parent and child rooms are an absolute disgrace and the floor is always wet," she says.

"They are a very bad look for visitors and cannot be very hygienic for anyone."

The centre was opened in 1990 in time for the Commonwealth Games and remains the only swimming pool in West Auckland.

It is used for commonwealth games time trials, synchronised swimming and water polo.

Former Henderson and Massey Local Board chairman Assid Corban says he is disgusted.

"They haven't got the revenue. To see the maintenance being neglected is a disaster.

"It upsets me to hear of the terrible state of the pool and the council won't give us extra funding to maintain the pool at this time."

Mr Corban was instrumental in getting the aquatic centre built. As the then mayor of the Henderson Borough Council, he presented a package outlining the need for such a facility.

The Government and the then Auckland Regional Authority each contributed about $5 million to the build with the remaining $5m coming directly from local ratepayers.

Due to over-capacity, Mr Corban says that the pool now operates a one out, one in policy.

"They expect the pool to survive on its own as a local pool. I wrote to the council asking them to to make it a regional pool but they refused and still treat it as a local pool. It's not.

"People come from all over Auckland and New Zealand to this pool."

Joan Penny from Auckland Council Pools and Leisure says it is aware that the changing room floors are often wet.

"This is due to the regular cleaning schedule, as well as increased usage over the holiday period."

Ms Penny says the family and accessible changing rooms are to be upgraded in a project that is scheduled for the first half of this year.

She says while the number of pool users has increased since free swimming for under-16s was established the pool water is cleaned just as regularly. "We meet the NZ Poolsafe water quality standards, and have increased staffing levels to cater for the increase in usage."

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