Monday, December 14, 2009

Carnegie Pool - example of how other councils are upgrading

the below article is an recent item in the Flinders News South Australia


03 Dec, 2009 01:49 PM

"The Port Pirie City Pool was originally opened on November 18, 1964 .

The facility had reached the end of its useful life and had started to show signs of its age.

More specifically, the pool had dropped at one end, it looked tired, pipe work under the pool used for filtration purposes had corroded and was blocked, tiles on the floor of the pool had constantly lifted, and the pool was leaking a significant amount of water.

Port Pirie Regional Council formed a working party comprising a representative from the Port Pirie Swimming Club, the contract manager of the pool, elected members and council staff to investigate the options for the pool and to report back to council on their recommendations.
The working party’s report said council was not in a financial position to replace the pool completely and therefore recommended a call for expression of interests to undertake a major refurbishment of the existing pool.

Council subsequently called for expression of interests for this project in December, 2008. At the same time, the Australian Government announced its Regional and Local Community Infrastructure Program which would see Port Pirie Regional Council receive $635,000 for eligible projects. Council resolved to use these funds exclusive for the refurbishment of the City pool.

The refurbishment includes:
– Relining the 50m pool in a water-tight manner
– Provide a level deck edge
– Instal new inlet and return lines
– Renew or replace existing balance tank
– Maintain an accredited 50m pool
– Provide seven lanes in about a 15m width
– Provide better access to the pool, via steps, to those with limited mobility

The successful contractor has placed a new aluminium “Murtha” pool into the existing concrete shell of the old pool.
While council is using the existing pool structure, the end result will be a new modern pool. In fact, the “Murtha” pool being installed at Port Pirie is no different from a large number that have been installed
in greenfield sites around the world, including at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

The total cost of this project is about $986,000 with council receiving a $635,000 grant from the Australian Government as part of its Regional and Local Community Infrastructure Program. The project commenced at the end of the 2008-09 swimming season and will be completed ready for the start of the 2009-10 season.

In addition to the refurbishment, council will also take the opportunity to complete a number of other minor improvements around the city pool including:
– Provision of additional shaded areas
– Paint the existing change room
– Replace and tidy up the concrete surrounds
– Replace the pump shed. "

further details of this project from the Federal Govt are at

I believe that Glen Eira council can find a 'middle way' to upgrade our community pool at Carnegie that is financially responsible whilst providing for a modern facility for the future.


  1. Really good news Neil,

    I am not surprised that people with the will can find solutions to problems.

    Lets hope our bureaucrats can find the will to tackle the Carnegie pools problems, we have watched these problems compound over decades in what I would call deliberate neglect.

    Apart from the recent emergency few K spent to keep the pool operational while the GESAC is built, the Carnegie pool has been badly neglected, weeds have invaded the once pleasant lawns, the perimeter fence is a rusting mess and all the other structural problems that old pools seem to suffer have deteriorated.

    To put it in perspective, the 1 million spent on the Port Pirie Pool is just a fraction of the cost that is being spent on converting Glen Eira sporting ovals to dry climate grasses, this experiment maybe a complete failure if the climate continues to change and the rainfall continues to decline in Melbourne. But these millions of dollars is still gambled by council.

    Would I be silly to think that there is a covert policy to deliberately to run down the pool then use this run-down condition as a ‘fait accompli’ to rid themselves of this pool problem, and no doubt then propose that the site be sold to a private developer?

    On the positive side the pool and its surrounds has a pleasant ambience that users do enjoy. If repaired and some care goes to bringing back the lawns to expectable standards, the fence replaced; nothing fancy, a new chain-wire fence with do. The car park could do with some trees planted throughout to improve its all year look. The old pool manager’s residence behind the pool could be removed and the land returned to public open space, or another use found for the building [renovated] to be a kindergarten or something else useful, etc.

    What we have here as Cr. Neil Pilling has shown us, (and Cr. Jim Magee, who is on record as supporting the keeping of the pool), is an exciting project that only comes along every fifty years or so. Glen Eira bureaucrats and all the other Councillors should rise from their slumber and show us what is possible with the Carnegie Memorial Pool.

  2. Good luck Neil, but you should have realised that this administration (and apparently the majority of councillors) don't give a damn about how other councils do things better. If they did, then the local law would be different, concrete paths wouldn't appear everywhere like mushrooms overnight, and environmental action would have started a decade ago. The only comparisons this mob make is to claim ad nauseam that compared to other councils this is a 'low cost' one. Of course, if one goes back even further one will find that Glen Eira raised its rates by 16% - the highest in the state. But this doesn't figure in calculations - only the spin does.

  3. Neil, when did you change your view that the election of the Mayor should be an open and transparent process?

  4. Glenhuntly, I was very happy on the night to nominate Cr Tang for the mayoral role and who was the only nominee. I dont believe my views on the process have changed.

  5. Glen Huntly has made a valid point Neil.

    While Tang may have been the only one to nominate off the floor why wouldn't Hyams or Magee or even yourself have been seen as worthy options to providing an alternative new face to the Chair. What occurs in the Chamber does not necessarily reflect the views of participates in the Pre Council Meeting arena, I'm a thinkin'! Surely Hyams would have felt ready to take the Chair as the most experienced Councillor. I wonder, Neil if you chose to nominate Tang yourself or whether you were asked to do this for a reason not yet quite clear to us.

    On another matter:

    I will be very pleased to see a campaign that openly supports the two pools within Glen Eira, given our Global Warming and increased population. Going to the beach is a nightmare in parking for families and suburban pools do have their place!

    If our rate payers dollar is the issue, perhaps we need to reassess what our priorities are, perhaps reducing money spent on arts and culture and more on the practicalities of entertaining youth, getting people to exercise, and the tools to that. Suburban private pools won't really be viable as the lack of water continues ongoing, and are minimal in Glen Eira anyhow.

    I do hope the local schools are aware of the dangers of losing their local pool in Carnegie once GEASC is up and running.

    Councillors are the decision makers, so it may be an opportune time to include this question in the Annual survey undertaken by Council on Community Satisfaction! Preparing the ground rules now for two years time is called forward planning!

  6. Thanks Mary for your comments.

    Cr Tang was the only councillor to put himself forward for the role and had unanimious support . I was pleased to nominate Steven solely for the reasons that I believe he will do a very good job and i had confidence in his abilities.

    The role of Mayor is I feel a full-time committment. Not all crs are in position to undertake this. Most crs have some form of day career/job that would be have to be placed on hold or greatly reduced. There are also family time sacrifices at nites and weekends etc . I am certainly conscious of this with my own relatively young family.

    Probably more to the point is that the whole mayoral electoral process be conducted in an open and transparent manner that would allay some of the concerns raised here and on your blog- I take onboard the critisisms that I havent followed thru on this enough , with a view for advocating stronger for change next year.

    On the Carnegie Pool we are furious agreement!

  7. Well said Neil.

    My concern is also with process.

    I am actually quite impressed with Cr Tang. He seems to be a very capable person and he performed creditably as Mayor previously.