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Councils and developers look to embrace lagoon lifestyles

Councils and developers look to embrace lagoon lifestyles
March 11, 2018

With councils looking for innovative new ways to invigorate local communities and boost regional economies, the potential of Crystal Lagoons technology is being explored for a number of locations across Australia.

Having established an Australian base in 2016, the global mega lagoon developer is making significant inroads into regional and outer metropolitan locations with both councils and real estate developers seeing that Crystal Lagoons’ public access lagoon model has particular relevance to Australia.

Over the first year of this millennium a number of communities in Queensland introduced lagoon pools with resultant economic benefits. However, since the opening of the Orion Lagoon in Springfield in 2015, costs have prevented other projects coming to fruition.

At a cost of $2 million per hectare, considerably less than other technologies, Crystal Lagoons’ 'pulse oxidation' water cleaning system, the heart of the company’s public access lagoon model, has the potential to drive regional revival and growth.

As a result, the Townsville City Council 2020 Masterplan, revealed in revealed in December last year,  includes a plan for Crystal Lagoons to play a pivotal role in transforming the city and ocean front, acting as a catalyst for further commercial opportunities in tourism and hospitality.

 In the far south-west corner of NSW on the Victorian border, Wentworth Shire Council has lodged a rezoning application with Planning NSW that would pave the way for a 650 hectare mixed use tourism precinct including a 10.8 hectare lagoon.

A number of Queensland regional towns, including the town of Mitchell in the Western Downs district of the Maranoa Region, are exploring the potential of inviting Crystal Lagoons to help kick-start their local tourism economy.

Several local government areas in metropolitan Sydney are also keen to embrace the concept of a beach lifestyle and Crystal Lagoons’ discussions with councils in Sydney’s west on several major projects are advancing rapidly.

Campbelltown Council is currently investigating the feasibility of a crystal-clear lagoon near its CBD with a view to incorporating it as a centrepiece for a possible future Commonwealth Games bid.

Queensland coastal towns including Cairns, Mackay and Airlie Beach

The potential for aquatic, recreation and sports facilities to be integrated within specific area within the footprint of each lagoon lanes for lap swimming is yet another reason driving interest in Crystal Lagoons’ public access lagoon model.

Crystal Lagoons Oceania Director German Rocca sees that the advantages of bringing water to areas remote from the coast and in high growth metropolitan locations were now being recognised by developers and local governments in Australia.

Sydney-based Rocca explains “when we first entered Australia there was little awareness of the technology that we have developed to create these crystal-clear lagoons at very low construction and maintenance costs but with growing knowledge and the evidence from our many man-made lagoons around the world we now have multiple projects in negotiation in every State in the country.

“As a result of the high level of council interest we have modified our business model to incorporate public access lagoons which look likely to become our biggest area of expansion in Australia and globally.

“This model sits comfortably alongside our partnerships with developers of residential and mixed use communities. Our lagoons provide a unique amenity that provides a competitive edge to developers, especially in locations on the fringe of the CBD, where there is a significant travel distance to the coast.

“A large part of the appeal is that a lagoon caters to a wide demographic in an energy and water efficient way. Golf courses no longer have the appeal they once did and in many localities councils and owners are looking for ways to make them viable or reuse the land for other recreational or residential purposes. Playgrounds appeal to young families but are not going to influence families with older children, singles and empty nesters.

“Many municipal swimming pools are coming to the end of their natural life or becoming more and more expensive to maintain causing many councils to look for alternatives.

“A crystal-clear lagoon has universal appeal for all ages and family types and plays an important role in helping residents of new communities to live a healthy lifestyle.”

While these forward-looking councils are entering new territory in Australia, there is plenty of international precedent to guide their decision-making.

Egypt’s Sharm El Sheik resort has arisen from an inhospitable tract of land in the Sinai Desert on the strength of the 12.5 hectare lagoon created using Crystal Lagoons technology. The strength of the Middle East market has led Crystal Lagoons to open a new regional office in Cairo to manage contracts involving more than $5 billion in real estate projects.

In the USA, where Crystal Lagoons currently has 13 projects under construction, primarily in residential development settings, it is the Wynn Resorts’ conversion of its Las Vegas strip golf course into a crystal clear lagoon that has garnered international attention.

A 6.3 hectare crystal-clear lagoon, developed with Crystal Lagoons technology, forms the centrepiece of Indonesia’s Treasure Bay Bintan resort and has become its star attraction, since completion in 2015. At the heart of the $3 billion tourist destination, developed by Singapore’s Landmarks Berhad, the lagoon offers guests the first and largest recreational clear-waterbody in South East Asia.

The appeal, whether it be for casinos, leisure resort or councils, is obvious. Water holds an irresistible attraction for every demographic and age – families, youngsters, teens, old people, male, female.

Rocca said a major consideration for private developer-funded and public access lagoons was cost and sustainability, adding “crystal-clear lagoons can be established at very low cost and the technology we have developed delivers crystal clear water using salt, brackish or fresh water using a fraction of the chemicals required by traditional pool filtration systems.

“Importantly they have proven to be a powerful marketing tool and led to increased premiums and densities.”

Crystal Lagoons technology uses up to 100 times less chemical products and 2% of the energy of conventional filtration technologies. They also consume half the fresh water of a park and up to 30 times less fresh water than a golf course.

Click here to contact Crystal Lagoons's Sydney office via their entry in the Australasian Leisure Management Supplier Directory.

Images: The planned Crystal Lagoons development in Townsville (top and middle) and Crystal Lagoons' public access lagoons model (below).

6th July 2016 - TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND TO GET AUSTRALIA’S FIRST MAN-MADE CRYSTAL LAGOON 

2nd April 2016 - CRYSTAL LAGOONS AUSTRALIAN LAUNCH OFFERS THE POTENTIAL TO TRANSFORM AQUATIC LIVING

10th November 2015 - CRYSTAL LAGOONS’ DUBAI PROJECT SET TO TRANSFORM THE UAE LEISURE LANDSCAPE 

7th September 2015 - ORION LAGOON OPENS IN SPRINGFIELD

1st February 2015 - INVESTING IN WELLNESS CAN REDESIGN WELFARE

20th January 2015 - CRYSTAL LAGOONS DEVELOP GIANT DESERT OASES 

8th March 2012 - URBAN DESIGN CAN BOOST ACTIVITY AND HEALTH


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Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

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