Chairman keen pool advocate

Taieri Community Facilities Trust chairman Michael Stedman is taking action on the Mosgiel pool campaign. Photo by Craig Baxter.
Taieri Community Facilities Trust chairman Michael Stedman is taking action on the Mosgiel pool campaign. Photo by Craig Baxter.
The former head of Natural History New Zealand has joined the campaign for a new Mosgiel pool facility.

Businessman Michael Stedman was recently appointed chairman of the Taieri Community Facilities Trust and is enthusiastic about gaining traction for the project which was first proposed in 2006.

''I'm new and I'm enthusiastic,'' he said.

''I feel privileged to be asked to do something that is so important.''

Mr Stedman is well known for his involvement as managing director of NHNZ, which he helped transform into a thriving business. Mr Stedman retired in 2013.

He hoped to bring some of the organising skills from his business work to the pool project.

''We need to find a partnership with the council. It's about working together. We could probably achieve something special.''

The trust aims to present an aquatic centre concept to the council in December to be considered for the Long Term Plan.

To accomplish this, the trust would embark on an extensive community engagement and consultation programme.

''The trust will meet with at least 80 different groups that include pre-schools, schools, sports groups and senior committees.''

Mosgiel-Taieri Community Board chairman Bill Feather said the board fully supported securing council funding for a new pool.

''The community board and the trust have formed a partnership, if you like,'' he said.

''The current pool is way past its use-by date. It does not have the capacity for the growing area.''

The current Mosgiel pool facility was built in the late 1930s. It is only open for half the year, with limited hours for public use.

As it stands, the Mosgiel pool is unable to meet the demands of an expanding population.

A new aquatic centre concept would include a main pool, a toddlers' area, a learn-to-swim area and a hydrotherapy pool.

''It has to be designed to meet the needs of a whole community.

''I think when we look at it, aquatic centres are recreational. They support a range of health benefits for a community.''

The Taieri lacked ''a heart'' and the facility design could allow room for greater expansion of a gymnasium, physiotherapy and cafe.

The facility needed to reflect the different needs of the community, including the elderly, as a quarter of the Mosgiel population was aged 65 and older, he said.

A new aquatic facility would cater for residents across Dunedin, he said.

A journey from St Clair to Moana Pool took 11 minutes and included 10 sets of traffic lights. By comparison, a St Clair-to-Mosgiel journey took 14 minutes and included two sets of traffic lights, he said.

While the need for a new pool was significant, Mr Stedman understood the Dunedin City Council had ''more debt than you can shake a stick at''.

''The first hurdle is to get the council to endorse it. Raising money is crucial.''

The trust had shown its capabilities in the past, establishing a successful model with the Memorial Park playground, which turned $200,000 of council funding into almost $900,000.

''We have to find ways of moving forward into the future ... with the community we will put in a huge effort into raising money.

''We have to find ways to build because we don't want people to look back and say this was the time of nothing.''

 

- By Alastair Lynn & Shawn McAvinue

 

 

Businessman Michael Stedman was recently appointed chairman of the Taieri Community Facilities Trust and is enthusiastic about gaining traction for the project which was first proposed in 2006.

''I'm new and I'm enthusiastic,'' he said.

''I feel privileged to be asked to do something that is so important.''

Mr Stedman is well known for his involvement as managing director of NHNZ, which he helped transform into a thriving business. Mr Stedman retired in 2013.

He hoped to bring some of the organising skills from his business work to the pool project.

''We need to find a partnership with the council. It's about working together. We could probably achieve something special.''

The trust aims to present an aquatic centre concept to the council in December to be considered for the Long Term Plan.

To accomplish this, the trust would embark on an extensive community engagement and consultation programme.

''The trust will meet with at least 80 different groups that include pre-schools, schools, sports groups and senior committees.''

Mosgiel-Taieri Community Board chairman Bill Feather said the board fully supported securing council funding for a new pool.

''The community board and the trust have formed a partnership, if you like,'' he said.

''The current pool is way past its use-by date. It does not have the capacity for the growing area.''

The current Mosgiel pool facility was built in the late 1930s. It is only open for half the year, with limited hours for public use.

As it stands, the Mosgiel pool is unable to meet the demands of an expanding population.

A new aquatic centre concept would include a main pool, a toddlers' area, a learn-to-swim area and a hydrotherapy pool.

''It has to be designed to meet the needs of a whole community.

''I think when we look at it, aquatic centres are recreational. They support a range of health benefits for a community.''

The Taieri lacked ''a heart'' and the facility design could allow room for greater expansion of a gymnasium, physiotherapy and cafe.

The facility needed to reflect the different needs of the community, including the elderly, as a quarter of the Mosgiel population was aged 65 and older, he said.

A new aquatic facility would cater for residents across Dunedin, he said.

A journey from St Clair to Moana Pool took 11 minutes and included 10 sets of traffic lights. By comparison, a St Clair-to-Mosgiel journey took 14 minutes and included two sets of traffic lights, he said.

While the need for a new pool was significant, Mr Stedman understood the Dunedin City Council had ''more debt than you can shake a stick at''.

''The first hurdle is to get the council to endorse it. Raising money is crucial.''

The trust had shown its capabilities in the past, establishing a successful model with the Memorial Park playground, which turned $200,000 of council funding into almost $900,000.

''We have to find ways of moving forward into the future ... with the community we will put in a huge effort into raising money.

''We have to find ways to build because we don't want people to look back and say this was the time of nothing.''

 

- By Alastair Lynn & Shawn McAvinue

ODT/directory - Local Businesses

CompanyLocationBusiness Type
Anne's Sewing RoomDunedinArts & Crafts
Harvest Moon CafeWaikouaitiCafés
45 South Management LtdCromwellOrchards
Pedersen Read LtdDunedinEngineers & Planners