Port Macquarie-Hastings Council (PMHC) will move into the next stage of planning for a new regional aquatic facility, after councilors approve the development of a detailed business case for the complex.

Four design options were presented at Thursday’s regular council meeting and will form the basis of the business case report which will determine the most economically viable option to build and operate the Macquarie Park complex.

The new facility is set to replace the Port Macquarie Olympic Pool, which has served the area for more than 56 years. A construction schedule has not yet been determined and will be subject to future funding and development approvals.

The design options include key elements submitted by the community, following an extensive period of public exposure last year that resulted in over 950 community match pieces.

The community noted a desire to include a 25 meter pool, a 50 meter outdoor pool, a single point of access to the facility, and compliant diving and water polo components that were not part of the original design.

These new elements have now been included in the four slightly varied modifications, all of which will now have a detailed business case.

Lucilla Marshall, PMHC Group Manager, Community, said the main consideration at this stage of the project was to understand what elements should be included in the contemporary installation.

“This project has undergone considerable planning and foresight, which has included – and will continue to include – significant community input,” said Ms. Marshall.

“While the overwhelming number of people asked about the proposal were enthusiastic about the installation, there were a large number of responses asking us to incorporate a number of new elements – which we did.

“We are now ready to propose these designs for the purpose of developing a business case, to see which option will be the most cost effective in terms of construction and operation.”

Once finalized, a business case report will be tabled at a future board meeting recommending that a preferred option be approved for development design and application (DA).

After completion of a DA and confirmation of funding, detailed design and construction can begin.

Ms. Marshall said the board has allocated a funding commitment to undertake demand analysis, options assessment, conceptual design, business case and prepare development application, but additional funding will be required. to finalize the detailed design and for the construction of the facilities.

The construction costs associated with new contemporary aquatic facilities are significant and will require that all avenues of funding be explored in order to complete the project.

/Public release. This material from the original organization/authors may be ad hoc in nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author or authors.View Full here.

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