Trust hails benefits of aquatic proposal

A proposed new aquatic centre would bring many benefits to Mosgiel and Dunedin, but would not compete with Moana Pool, proponents say.

The proposed $15 million-plus aquatic centre involved much more than a replacement pool for the current inadequate Mosgiel facility, Taieri Community Facilities Trust spokesman David Murphy said.

''The current pool - it just hasn't got the facilities.''

A key part of the proposal is a 25m x 25m main pool, designed to meet the official short course requirements of Fina, the international swimming body.

This would become a national-class competitive swimming facility.

The proposed Mosgiel centre was not intended to compete with Moana Pool, but complement it by providing ''excess capacity'', to meet demand, including in Mosgiel.

The Mosgiel centre was also likely to attract some further high-profile sporting events to Mosgiel and Dunedin.

It could be used in triathlons, and would cater for other aquatic activities, such as synchronised swimming.

The centre would boost the economy, also showing Mosgiel was ''not the dark side of the moon'' when it came to modern facilities.

The proposed 20m x 10m learners pool would also play a vital role in boosting the learn-to-swim efforts of primary schools in the wider rural area.

Learning to swim was part of the primary curriculum and New Zealand continued to have a high level of drownings.

''Giving the country area kids the opportunity to learn to swim is crucial.''

A proposed 20 x 10 hydrotherapy pool, heated to 35degC, would also provide many other community benefits, enabling older people from Mosgiel and elsewhere in the city to keep fit through aquatic activities, including aqua aerobics.

The heated pool would also cater for sportspeople recovering from injury and older people recovering from surgery.

The learning to swim and hydrotherapy pools would also add income, he said.

Although all public aquatic centres required some subsidy, the latest pools used advanced technology which reduced some of the traditional pool running costs, he said.

The Dunedin City Council has provided $30,000 to undertake a feasibility study of the proposed centre.

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