Olympic Pool Outside

Q&As

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Q&As

Here's some answers to some common questions.
If your question hasn’t been answered below, email comms@gdc.govt.nz and we’ll add it to the page

About the 33m pool

Q. How will the 33m pool be managed for all users - lane swimmers, walkers, swimming clubs and the public?

The 33m outside pool will remain open in summer and winter as the inside 50m pool is rebuilt.
There's no doubt facility users will have to work together to share this aquatic space during the construction period.
We're creating a bulkhead for the pool that allows us to operate different activities at each end. One section will be 25m long with 5 standard 2.5m wide lanes for lane swimmers and other activities at different times of the day.
The other end will be a 12m x 8m space which can be used for a variety of aqua activities also depending on the time of the day.
Please ring 867 6220 and we can let you know how and when you can use any of our pools. 

Q. Will my fitness class be available during construction?

Pool staff will ensure the 33m pool will benefit the widest possible range of users. Please contact the pool to see what classes are on, as there may be some instances when normal classes are not available for short periods of time. Olympic pool page

Q. How warm will the outside 33m pool be during winter?

We're diverting heat from the 50m pool to the 33m pool to make it a comfortable temperature for a range of activities. Sadly however, we can’t control the southerlies that can whip in during winter months! See construction phases


About the rebuild project 

Q. Why are we doing the project?

Gisborne’s pool complex was first built in 1974. Like many other New Zealand public pools of that era is was originally designed as an outdoor facility used only during the warmer months. As would be expected for a facility of this age and location, over time there has been a growing list of major maintenance issues that need to be addressed. This, combined with the changing demand for aquatic recreational facilities, means the current facility is no longer ideal.  

Q. Why has the cost of pool redevelopment increased?

Large scale social assets like libraries, museums and pools make a key contribution to community wellbeing - but they're expensive to build and renew.
Pool redevelopment was always going to be expensive and in the past estimated costs have risen from $14-$17m in 2016 to $46 million this year. During that time we asked more questions of user groups, designers, geotechnical experts and construction professionals and now we better understand what's involved with developing the site. That, combined with rising material, fuel, and labour costs has also increased the price of delivering the project.

Q. Could the money allocated to the pool redevelopment have been spent elsewhere?

No. The Olympic Pool renovation project was one of several projects for which Council submitted a funding application to the Infrastructure Reference Group for Covid-19 recovery funding.

The IRG received just under 2000 submissions nationwide including another 8 funding applications from Council in areas like flood control and wastewater, as well as the pool redevelopment submission. 

Government ministers decided which projects to progress and considered advice from the IRG. Once a project was selected for funding the money can be spent only on that project.

In mid-July 2020 Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was here to announce $40m for the Olympic Pool Complex upgrade.

Q. What will parking look like at the redeveloped facility?

Parking will be significantly increased to around 100 parks in a main carpark accessed off Stanley Road. There will be limited informal parallel parking available along Stanley Road, and a grassed parking spillover area available during events and peak time.

Q. How does the bulkhead in the centre of the 50m pool work?

The movable bulkhead allows the 50m pool to turn into a multipurpose aquatic area so different activities can happen at the same time.
Staff can activate the motorised bulkhead to move from the centre of the pool to the southern end. It takes about 12 minutes for the bulkhead to complete its journey and create a 50m pool.
The pool is 51.5m long allowing for the 1.5m wide bulkhead to sit at one end without compromising pool length. 

Q. Can the 50m pool really be 2 temperatures?

Yes. The process of heating a pool begins in the plant room. Using a dual system water on either side of the watertight bulkhead can be heated to different temperatures. Underwater insulated panels on both sides of the bulkhead help maintain the heat on each side of the pool.

Q. What regional events can be held in the 50m pool?

We’re building a community aquatic recreation facility and not an event-based facility. However, we can still host FINA-compliant competition swimming, water polo, underwater hockey, and surf lifesaving.

Q. Are you recycling deconstruction material?

Through the demolition planning phase we'll work with contractors to ensure that where possible we can recycle and reuse waste material.
Some pool equipment, plant, and infrastructure can also be recycled, for example the lane ropes and pool covers from the 50m pool can be retrofitted for use in the 33m pool outside.
We'll store and then re-purpose shade sails removed during construction.