The leak-ridden War Memorial Olympic Pool will soon be bright, new and beautiful, thanks to Coffs Harbour City Council awarding a $5.4m contract to Coffs-based Swimplex Aquatics for a major upgrade.
Based on a design brief by Facility Design Group Architects, the upgrade involves renovating the 50m pool to FINA length standards with wet deck collection gutters; adding new soiled water and filtered water reticulation to the 50m pool; adding compliant sand filtration plant for the 50m pool; adding a multi-function indoor heated 25m pool and plant; building a children’s splash pad with interactive water toys; modernising the change rooms, management and kiosk facilities; building a concrete grandstand; and adding a variety of modern shade structures.
A philanthropic donation from Barbara Hogbin and the late Allen Hogbin helped secure the project, in addition to government, trust and council funds and loans.
Swimplex Aquatics won the design and construct tender based on the use of the Myrtha Pool construction system. Myrtha technology consists of pre-engineering the pool from stainless steel panels with a durable heat bonded PVC surface. More than 60 Myrtha commercial pools now in Australia, including Orange, Forbes, Cobar, Young and Port Pirie.
John Dangerfield from Swimplex says they renovated their first 50m pool in 1993 at Richmond Air Force Base, and since then have embraced the system and even invented technologies to aid the process.
“The Myrtha product is continually evolving to the point where the company is now recognised as the official world-wide partner of FINA,” says Dangerfield. “When we do a major pool site upgrade for one council, the surrounding councils tend to get jealous – so look out Port Macquarie, Kempsey and Grafton!”
Work will start on the Coffs Harbour project in April and is expected to be completed in time for the start of the next swimming season. Major works on the council’s two other pools at Woolgoolga and Sawtell have been ear-marked for next year.