Repairs at Gungahlin Leisure Centre Swimming continue to hang in the balance as NSW COVID-19 restrictions take its toll in Canberra.
The ACT Government announced that there won;t any swimming at the facility as repairs would not be finished this year because the tiler is under lockdown in Sydney.
Minister for Sport and Recreation, Yvette Berry said the The 50-metre pool could not be tiled as the contracted tilers were banished to Sydney by the COVID-19 travel restrictions.
“Unfortunately, this means the pool will not be ready by the end of the year as originally anticipated,” said Ms Berry.
Continued Minister Berry:“Tiling cannot begin until travel restrictions lift, or unless the tilers are granted an exemption to travel to the ACT.”
The pool was closed in March 2020 due to lockdown, but tiles fell off the pool during that period. The $28 million pool is only seven years old which raises question marks over the quality of the work which was done by the pool buider.
The builder of the pool ADCO Construction, has agreed to pay the government $400,000 for the repairs. The government then contracted Kynetic, a construction and management services group, to repair the pool at a cost of $1.52.
A government spokesperson said the situation in Sydney was unpredictable adding that a new timeframe will be issued as soon as possible.
“The government is continuing to explore options to get the tiling done as soon as possible; however, the first priority is to keep the ACT community safe from COVID-19.”
Ms Berry was apologetic. “I know this has been incredibly frustrating for members of the Gungahlin Leisure Centre and the Gungahlin community. This is just one of the many construction projects impacted by restrictions across the country which aim to keep our community safe and stop the spread of COVID-19. We appreciate your patience and ongoing loyalty to our centre while the 50-metre pool is being repaired.”
President of Gungahlin Community Council Peter Elford expressed the frustration of members over the delay. Residents feel that repairing process would have continued if the government had appointed a local tiler
“Apart from managing to engage a locally based contractor, it really would have been hard to anticipate that outcome,” said Elford.
Greens MLA Andrew Braddock shared in the community’s frustrations. “This is really unfortunate for the people of Gungahlin,” said Braddock.
“Every district in Canberra deserves great sports and recreation facilities to exercise and play. Sadly, Gungahlin is going to miss out for a bit longer.
“I will make every effort to continue to advocate for Gungahlin residents, to get the pool finished as quickly as possible, and to improve our district for those who live here now and in years to come.”