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Napier City Council to continue with plans for new $41 million aquatic centre

Napier City Council to continue with plans for new $41 million aquatic centre
December 29, 2018

Napier City Council is to continue with plans to develop a new aquatic centre for Hawke’s Bay communities following a narrow pre Christmas vote on the $41 million project.

Objecting councillors, who cited lack of consultation and inaccurate information on the proposal when it was first agreed, were out-voted 6-7 in their bid to put the pool development proposal back out for public consultation.

As a result, the Council will continue with its plans to build a new aquatic facility in the suburb of Poraiti, and close the ageing Napier Aquatic Centre in Onekawa.

In June, the Council opted to develop a new facility with 25 and 20 metre pools to include 10-lanes of swimming; a beach access pool, lazy river and bomb pool; gym and wellness area and a café.

Originally costed at $37 million, the preferred option was cheaper than a plan that included a 50 metre pool and more expensive than an option to rebuild and add to the existing Napier Aquatic Centre.

One reason for not redeveloping the Onekawa facility was a high level of ground contamination and "known asbestos" in the existing pool building.

Built between the 1950s and 1990s, the Napier Aquatic Centre was described in a Council report as "ageing, inefficient and not fully fit for purpose".

The complex receives about 200,000 visitors a year and is at capacity at peak times - from after school until 7pm - meaning, according to the Council report, that there is a "significant and growing" section of the community are unable to access aquatic facilities at peak times because of a lack of available water space.

Napier City Council is also budgeting to redevelop its Aquarium.

For information on the proecjt go to www.napier.govt.nz/napier/projects/napier-aquatic-centre-redevelopment/

Images show artist's impressions of the new Napier Aquatic Centre. Courtesy of Napier City Council.

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26th December 2016 - Aquatics Hastings awarded gold swim school status

2nd September 2015 - Architects highlight contemporary aquatic and recreation facilities as social hubs

21st December 2014 - NZRA highlights the value of council recreation investment

4th February 2014 - Plans progress on Napier wave park

7th August 2013 - Sport NZ aquatic facilities study says New Zealand has too many pools

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