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Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre’s 50 metre pool set for reconstruction
Moree Plains Shire Council has committed to the redevelopment of the 50 metre pool at the Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre.
With $1.8 million put aside for the refurbishment of the ‘Olympic’ pool in its 2020/21 budget, Moree Mayor, Katrina Humphries told local newspaper The Moree Champion "it has always been the jewel in our crown and it will be our jewel again."
The reconstruction has been years in the making, ever since a number of issues arose following the redevelopment of the facility in 2012.
In late 2017, the Council commenced proceedings in the Supreme Court of NSW over matters relating to the project. Those proceedings were ultimately settled shortly before trial.
Advising of the current plans, Moree Plains Shire Council General Manager, Lester Rodgers advised “since completion of the redevelopment, a range of issues associated with the Olympic pool have impacted the way local community members, visitors from the surrounding region and tourists alike could use the Olympic
"With council being the owner of the MAAC facility, the past few years have been very challenging.
"Due to issues associated with the Olympic pool, we have had to restrict patron access to the far side of the pool, on the southern side and this has affected its usage."
Mayor Humphries added "of course we are disappointed that we need to close this part of the MAAC for a period of time but we are looking forward to the long-term benefits its reconstruction will create.
"It means that in time, the MAAC will be able to offer a world-class, Olympic FINA-standard competition pool that can be used by the local community, the surrounding region and visiting tourists."
Council is now in the process of decommissioning the Olympic pool and commencing the procurement process for the reconstruction before undertaking community consultation.
With the facility closed some work has been undertaken during the lockdown with its outside hot pools re-cemented and re-tiled.
The gym and wellness centre pool have since reopened to the public, with a booking system in operation to use the indoor artesian pool.
There's currently a 20-person limit to swim in the artesian pool, at a cost of $5 for a 50-minute session.
Once more COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, the remaining operations of the MAAC will be reopened including the program pool, outside artesian pools, waterslide, children's aquatic play area and the Moree Artesian Wellness Centre.
It is hoped that these parts of the facility will all remain open while reconstruction works for the Olympic pool take place.
Mayor Humphries concluded “during the construction period, our top priority is to ensure that locals and visitors can continue to use the other facilities at the MAAC to their full extent.
"We understand that this closure will inconvenience our regular pool users and sincerely apologise for this unavoidable disruption.
"We will work with local user groups of the Olympic pool to help identify alternative arrangements during the reconstruction period, but it is anticipated that the impact on Moree tourism will be minimal.”
12th May 2020 - Hills Shire Council commits to rebuild of Waves Aquatic Centre
21st February 2020 - Report says Moree pool pricing Indigenous Australians out of its waters
31st October 2019 - Drought sees Tamworth set to have just one pool operating through summer
25th September 2019 - Drought affected NSW councils pledge to keep aquatic centres open
5th December 2012 - Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre open, but not yet fully operational
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