50 Days and 50 Ways – #33


Keep up the good work at Mudgeeraba Aquatic Centre – deliver upgraded amenities, refurbished grandstands, repaint the pool and enhance the pool interface with Rotary Park

The Mudgeeraba Aquatic Centre has never been in better shape, with growing patronage, a brand new program pool full with activities, a busy event calendar and a wonderful management team committed to the Village and it’s families and residents. Even the council staff who work in my office duck up there in their lunch break for a swim on hot days.

pool- brochure

An example of one of the great promotions run by the managers of Mudgeeraba Aquatic Centre in the brand new program pool.

There’s been a lot of talk about this subject, given the expectations of the public since the previous Councillor’s election promises were sadly untenable. Notwithstanding what has been said, the capital investment of over $900,000 in 2011-12 on the pre-load at Firth Park was NOT accompanied by any council resolution for delivery of a pool, and the design work that was funded included only a 25 metre option (NOT Olympic-sized) plus a hydrotherapy pool, similar to those offered at other nearby public and private locations. In information that is available to the public, site preparation, detailed design, hydraulic engineering plans and pre-load actually cost the city in excess of $3.3million. The project had been costed at a further $17million and no capital funds were allocated in the public document available that shows the forward estimates from 2011-12, in the budget before I was elected. Because of the neglect of the existing asset it was suggested that the Roberts St pool was at “end-of-life”, a sorely misleading conclusion in this constrained fiscal environment. Any assertion that the pool was “decommissioned” is entirely false. In fact in a recent report provided to my office this quote was provided;

The pool has no current structural issues and could have an expected life of 10 + years before any major expenditure is required

Pool - cap works 2011-12

The public budget document from 2011-12 that shows $3.3m in expenditure (for 10-11 and 11-12) and NIL in future provisioning. This budget document was made public in the budget before I was elected in 2012.

In 2012 when I was elected some tough decisions had to be made. The capital provisioning after the pre-load work had exhausted and account was practically empty. As the council prepared to deliver promised downward pressure on property rates, while dealing with the Allconnex debacle and previous council cost blowouts, and while preparing to fund the Commonwealth Games commitments and set aside funds for the offshore Seaway Release project for treated wastewater, local 25 metre pools were never going to be on the agenda; particularly not those left unfunded in any capital works forward projections. I informed the community that the pool, promised by the former Councillor could not be honoured. The council did allocate $20million for the Southport Aquatic Centre, which recently hosted the Pan Pacs Swimming Championships and will be the venue for the 2018 Commonwealth Games swimming program. While I love Mudgeeraba and believe it deserves the best, our local pool had to find a more cost effective solution to extend it’s life.

And find a solution we did!

We allocated $600,000 to a new indoor wheelchair-accessible in-ground program pool, heated to 33degrees. We activated the centre with a few special events, including dive-in movies and community consultations in the park, and committed to co-promoting activities with Sandie Williams of Belgravia, the pool managers. We replaced the fence and delivered a grassed picnic area. You can visit the pool to check these out for yourself right now!

mudg pool 1

We delivered an upgrade to Rotary Park adjacent and commenced the design work on improving the interface between the park and the pool area. This design work will be available in the coming 3 months, in order to prepare for the coming financial year’s budget. We’ve already forecast over future years, and to the tune of at least $105,000 in 16-17, for improvements to the amenities, installation of a shade sail, the grandstands, the repainting of the main pool, and improvements to the kids play area. Locals are excited and you can see from these patronage figures the feedback has been very positive.

  • 2010 – 2011     44,847
  • 2011 – 2012     43,777
  • 2012 – 2013       28,958 (11 months – included a pool closure period for repair of a fault)
  • 2013 – 2014       50,626
  • 2014 – 2015       57,290
  • 2015 – 2016       73,000 (projected) (actual = 43,035 in 7 months)

My own children learnt to swim in the old program pool, which had been sorely neglected. I’m proud to say that in the brand new program pool, that can continue with local families enjoying a much improved fresh water swimming lesson experience and I know my youngest son who is now almost 3 years old will thrive in the new environment.

To see this strategic planning continue, at the lowest possible cost for ratepayers with the best value for money, you need to Vote 1 Tozer on March 19th. Don’t listen to promises that CAN’T be kept.

I can’t wait to show you what we have in store, and I hope you’ll continue to support our local Council pool with your patronage, as it’s clear locals have done over the past 4 years.

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