Murky water clouds Civic Pool (TAMS "penny pinching" false economy?)

Murky water clouds Civic Pool (TAMS "penny pinching" false economy?)

Canberra Olympic Pool in Civic
Canberra Olympic Pool in Civic (Source:

Megan Doherty, city reporter from the Canberra Times wrote an article in the 5 November 2009 edition of the newspaper about problems being experienced at the Canberra Olympic Pool in Civic.

The article hints at economic shortcuts being taken by Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS) as well as indicating that this may be part of a larger plan  to “run down” the pool so that the land may be sold off and reclaimed for other development.

The budget cuts and implications of current penny pinching attitudes to public works and maintenance items by TAMS has also been discussed in a recent article on the Gungahlin Community Council website.

The Canberra Times article is reproduced below:

Murky water clouds Civic Pool

The water may look murky but Territory and Municipal Services says a filtration problem at the Canberra Olympic Pool in Civic is only aesthetic and not a health risk.

The Civic pool reopened to the public on Saturday but immediately ran into strife when plant broke down, affecting the level of water flow through the filtration system.

The result was cloudy water, most noticeably in the dive pool, which was still closed to the public yesterday because of visibility problems, with the lanes on the bottom of the 5m-deep pool unable to be seen.

Water polo teams were given the option of still using the dive pool and did train in it earlier this week.

The breakdown came after the ACT Government spent $2 million refurbishing the Civic pool complex last year.

Territory and Municipal Services sport and recreation facilities manager Rick Rand said the mechanical plant had not been part of the upgrade and the breakdown was just unfortunate timing.

Pool management was waiting on a part from Melbourne and confident the dive pool would be reopened before the weekend.

The main 50m pool was still being used by swimmers ”without any trouble”.

Mr Rand said the water was being tested hourly.

”It’s just very slightly cloudy. It’s just an appearance thing it’s certainly not a health issue,” he said.

Responding to a letter to The Canberra Times, Mr Rand denied there was a general plan to run down the Civic pool and reclaim the land for other development.

”Certainly not. It’s still a highly valued centre for people to use. The location is fantastic. The dive tower and dive pool are the only ones in town and people value them a lot.”

Mr Rand did concede there were a lot of bindiis in the lawn.

”Management has had them sprayed and that will take a little time to take effect but they’re aware of the problem and doing what they can to fix it,” he said. He denied there were other problems at the pool, including poor toilet maintenance.

Note: copyright of the material in this clipping resides with Fairfax Media. Usage permitted in accordance with the Australian Copyright Act 1968, Section 42: Fair dealing for purpose of reporting news. Source: The Canberra Times – 05 November 2009.

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