Swimming pool upgrade proposed

An upgrade of Wanaka's present swimming pool rather than a new aquatic centre in the town's proposed new sports facility has been recommended to the Queenstown Lakes District Council by the Wanaka Sports Facility steering group.

The group's recommendation is on the agenda for today's council meeting, being held in Wanaka.

After a recent round of public consultation, the group has delivered a list of priorities for the new facility to be built in the 112ha Three Parks development south of the Wanaka golf course.

The group said ''given potential funding constraints and community priorities'', it recommended a ''reduced stage 1'' facility that would comprise two indoor courts, change and storage facilities, an outdoor mixed-use artificial surface, toilets, casual recreation space and car parking.

As well, it recommended a refurbishment of the existing Wanaka community pool to include an independent learn-to-swim pool, new changing rooms and entry area, and improvements to plant.

The proposal does not include sports fields as part of stage 1 but suggests they were likely to be required ''well within'' the next 10 years.

Council general manager, operations, Ruth Stokes and chief executive Adam Feeley recommended the group's proposals be included in the draft annual plan and that staff continue with concept plans including detailed capital and operating cost estimates.

These should be available to the council by June 30.

They also recommended rating options for the facility be included in the draft annual plan to be adopted next month. In a discussion document, council staff said the sports facility being recommended would cost $12.3 million and the pool upgrade $2.1 million.

The cost if an aquatic centre was also included would be $25.6 million.

''[Council] officers consider the option recommended by the [steering group] is a pragmatic solution for the Upper Clutha district for the next 10 years,'' the document said.


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