Council chief executive touts pool project on budget

Response from Rockhampton Regional Council CEO Evan Pardon


WHAT a great project, delivered on time, on budget and within scope.

The pool redevelopment project commenced with confirmation of a commitment from the State Government to fund the construction of a 50m FINA-compliant heated pool in the 2010/11 State Budget.

A formal agreement was entered into in February 2011 for $5million funding with the State Government. All requirements of the funding agreement, which included time frames and budget, were met in completing the 50m FINA-compliant heated pool.

During the 2011/12 State Budget the State Government announced a further $2million funding to construct a grandstand and shade structure over the 50m pool.

Work commenced on the design and specification for the new grandstand and shade structure with the contract entered into in August 2012.

The project was completed in July 2013 and again met the time frames and budget as per the agreement with the State.

Round one of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) was announced in April 2011 and council resolved to support the full redevelopment of the Second World War Memorial Pool Complex.

Council allocated $5million to the project and requested $5million funding from the RDAF. Council's funding application was approved and the funding agreement was entered into in January 2012.

The funding agreement also stipulated a project completion date of April 2015.

Detailed design was completed and public tenders were called in February 2013, the submissions received were well over the budget available.

Council revisited the design and were able to make some changes that kept the project's design integrity and funding agreement criteria.

To fulfil council's commitment to hold the Australian Masters Swimming event, public tenders were called for the construction of the pools only. The successful tenderer commenced construction in August 2013 with the 25m pool completed for the Australian Masters in April 2014.

Public tenders for the building and site works was awarded and work commenced in November 2013.

Council added further funding to the pool's redevelopment that allowed for doubling the size of the wet play area.

The RDAF were notified of the changes and a variation to the agreement was formalised.

Council has met all of its obligations under the funding agreements with the State and Federal governments.

Council's decisions on the projects have been made in an open and transparent manner. The tender and execution have been open, fair and offering the best value.

The project is well on track and in its final stages; we are anticipating an opening of the completed new entry building, learn-to-swim and wet play area in December 2014 in time for the school holidays. Work will then commence on the car park, which is programmed for completion in April 2015 in line with the funding agreement.

The Second World War Memorial Aquatic Centre has been a collaborative approach by all levels of government that is set to deliver a state-of-the-art family-friendly aquatic centre that the region will most certainly be proud of.

The Rockhampton Regional Council is very grateful for the $7million State Government, $5million Australian Government's contribution which, with Council's $5.712million funding allocation, has allowed this facility to be finished to what it is today.

Council thanks all those who have championed the project and helped make it the success that we all expect it to be.

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