New Cambridge pool a step closer

12 June 2015
Cambridge could have a new indoor pool within the next four years.

Waipa District Council has agreed in principle to spend $7.8 million towards a radically improved pool complex, including the construction of an indoor eight or 10-lane 25-meter pool and a learner's pool.

The existing outdoor pool will be retained but will be upgraded along with changing facilities.

The plans are all contingent upon the wider community fundraising at least $1.1 million.

Mayor Jim Mylchreest said the council would prefer a new 10-lane pool to be built because it would allow more and different activities to occur at the same time.  But that would require $2.1 million to be found from other sources.

"If that's not achievable, we would aim to build an 8-lane indoor pool instead which would require $1.1 million to be raised privately."

Proposals for a new pool complex drew plenty of interest during consultation on the council's draft 10-Year Plan.  Most people supported council spending $6-8 million as opposed to the status quo or a $15.8 million option which included a leisure and therapy pool, children' pool and spa pool.

In January this year, Mylchreest said his council had heard a very strong message from the community -  "get on with it".

"We've taken that on board and brought the pool project forward by delaying some roading intersection projects in Cambridge. With the Waikato Expressway going in, council wanted to see the impact on traffic through Cambridge so I am comfortable with this."

Money for the pool which is not raised privately would come from the sale of council-owned land in Cambridge, development contributions and a 20-year loan.

Sport Waikato chief executive Matt Cooper said Waipa District Council had made the "right call" and said a new pool would provide huge benefits to a growing town.  The council's proposal aligned with Sport Waikato's regional sports and facilities plan, he said.

"Cambridge's existing pool has had a good run but it's limited in what it can offer the community.  An indoor 25-meter pool will provide year-round access to aquatic sport and recreational opportunities and we think it's a good, balanced and pragmatic solution," Cooper said.

"The council should be congratulated for putting a stake in the ground.  Now it's up to the community to support fund-raising efforts and make it happen."

The pool decision will be formally confirmed when the 10-Year Plan is signed off by councillors at the end of this month.

Ends

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Page reviewed: 12 Jun 2015 3:47pm