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Community solution to refurbish Edgeware Pool fails to comply

9 August 2006

A community solution to refurbish Edgeware Pool is a high-cost maintenance option that does not comply with New Zealand Standards, says Christchurch Mayor Garry Moore.

The Christchurch City Council has spent the last week reviewing the proposed community solution to refurbish and keep the pool open, as supplied by residents seeking to reverse Council’s decision to close Edgeware Pool.

Mr Moore said the alternative community solution had been reviewed by industry experts. “They were concerned that it not only fell short of complying with New Zealand Standards for swimming pool construction, but when all essential costs not included in the quote were added, the cost was close to $400,000 and in fact $40,000 more than the Council’s independent engineer’s estimate of a year ago.”

He said the community’s alternative solution proposed laying a 200mm floor slab which would not comply with the New Zealand Standard NZS4441 and created health and safety issues because the water depth would be too shallow.

“There were also technical issues with the proposed jointing system used for the floor and wall panels, the performance of the jointing compound in chlorinated water, and whether the reinforcing had been designed to withstand earthquakes.

“The quote for the alternative solution does not include a costing for a new balance tank, construction of roll-out channels or consequent alterations to reticulation which are all significant costs.”

Mr Moore said information supplied by industry experts had costed out the proposed alternative solution, including the cost of the essential items, from the quoted $230,400 to $398,900, and yet the proposal still did not comply with New Zealand Standards.

“Industry expert advice is that the cost to refurbish Edgeware Pool would be between $400,000 and $600,000. This is a considerable expense to ratepayers for an outdoor pool that operates for only a couple months of the year and is poorly patronised. The cost per public swim in 2004/05 was $16.49.”

Even if the local community’s solution did comply with New Zealand Standards, he said the proposed construction method came with a high maintenance cost.

“The quoted painting with epoxy, for example, needs to be repainted every five years and there are considerable costs in sandblasting each coat to allow for the next application. These paints also tend to flake off, clogging up filter systems and requiring extra maintenance.

“The Council has voted to close the pool and sell the land. However, the Council remains committed to looking at other ways to help the community,” Mr Moore said.

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