Pools fix costly repair job

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THE BILL for fixing underground pipes to reopen the main swimming pools at the Peninsula Aquatic and Recreation Centre in time for the busy summer months could creep close to the $1 million mark.

The PARC’s main 50-metre pool, aquatic playground and a learn-to-swim pool have been closed to swimmers since a plumbing fault on 12 October.

Rust has infested pipe brackets and pipes three years after the $49.7 million leisure centre first opened its doors.

Leisure centre management initially hoped to have the PARC pools open again by the end of October but “mid-December” is now a possibility according to Peninsula Leisure, the Frankston Council-owned company that manages the centre.

“Currently we are still on track to reopen the PARC 50 metres and learn to swim pools by mid-December, with contractors working seven days a week to resolve the infrastructure malfunction, Peninsula Leisure CEO Tim Gledhill said last week.

“Our members and the broader community will be advised immediately, once a reopen date is confirmed.”

Pools were drained so plumbing contractors can access the defective pipes.

Frankston councillors discussed the PARC pools closure and any rectification works behind closed doors since it related to legal advice after council’s public council meeting on Monday 20 November.

It is understood that about $17,000 a day is leaking from council’s balance sheet in lost income each day the PARC swimming pools remain closed to the public.

Centre members have not been charged membership fees while the pools remain closed.

Other PARC activities such as the gym and wellness centre are still open to visitors and members.

The wash up over who pays for the near $1 million rectification works to fix the underground pool pipes may involve talks between council, the centre builders and insurers.

First published in the Frankston Times – 4 December 2017

UPDATE: Peninsula Leisure advised on 6 December that the PARC swimming pools will reopen on Monday 11 December.

Peninsula Leisure CEO Tim Gledhill said: “To show our appreciation to our members for their patience and understanding throughout the closure, there will be a range of activities during the week, including free breakfast, kids’ activities and giveaways daily.”

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