Aquatic centre meets budget in first year
The Caroline Bay Aquatic Centre has made budget in its first year of operation.
Costs were higher than expected, but so was revenue, a report released yesterday by retiring mayor Janie Annear showed.
The Timaru District Council budget for the aquatic centre required 255,000 tickets to be bought each year, but in its first year 277,000 people had visited. CBay opened in August last year.
Revenue from user fees and charges for the facility was in excess of $2 million and exceeded forecast due to the popularity of the aquatics and swim school.
Operating costs of $2.9m were slightly above budget, but these were offset by additional revenue and a reduction in interest and depreciation costs.
"The budgeted expenditure in the 2012/2013 annual plan was $3.738m, to be funded approximately 50 per cent by user charges totalling $1.872m, and $1.866m from an aquatic centre rate of $102 per property. This was achieved for the year," Mrs Annear said.
"The first 12 months were highly successful with 277,000 visitors to the centre. These were optimistic numbers and it is fantastic to see them achieved."
More than 132,000 people have purchased casual entry to the pool for a variety of activities including aqua gentle classes, casual swimming, lane swimming, or just having fun on the hydroslide and in the chillax area.
Other use has included swimming squad training, swimming meets, visits by concession card and swim membership holders, the district health board S.W.I.M programme and schools, bringing total visitor numbers to 277,000.
"Learn 2 Swim continues to be popular. The membership is currently around 775 which also exceeds initial estimates of 650," the report said.
CBay Fitness has more than 900 members, which exceeds forecast, and continues to grow in popularity. The gym made a loss in its first year, but this was expected.
"This membership has built up gradually over the 12 months and after allowing for all overhead costs attributable to this area of the facility, as if it was a gym leased to an independent operator, a small loss was made in this start-up year. However, CBay management is confident that a surplus will be achieved in year two, to contribute towards the other operating costs of CBay."
CBay now moves into business as usual, continuing to focus on providing a fantastic experience for users and an economical return for ratepayers, community service group manager Sharon Matson said.
"The really exciting aspect is that it is performing better than expected with more people using all the services and facilities than was anticipated."
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