QEII is too popular; fight over space

POPULAR: The Taiora QEII Recreation and Sport Centre has had a one in one out policy 19 times since it opened due to reaching full capacity.

Sport groups and recreational users are jostling for space at the new QE II Recreation and Sport Centre.

The Coastal­-Burwood Community Board has noted concerns have been expressed from recreational pool users over the closure of the 25m pool for water polo activities.

Currently there is no access to the public lane swimming space in the 25m pool on Monday night from 7-9.30pm and Wednesday from 5pm-9.30pm.

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This is due to the pool being used for water polo activities, which requires a 2m depth.

A seminar has been planned which will be attended by the community board next Wednesday to evaluate how the first month of operation at QE II has gone.

The $38.6 million aquatic facility has been popular since it opened last month. As of Friday, the pool had reached capacity 19 times.

Of those, eight were in the school holidays. The facility has a 130m hydroslide, a 25m lap pool with a movable floor, a leisure pool with lazy river and water toys, a learn-to-swim pool, a hydro-therapy pool, a spa, sauna and steam room.

City council head of recreation, sport and events Nigel Cox said the pool space for the centre has been very challenging with the a large number of user groups requesting space.

He said before the facility opened there were a number of user groups operating with limited space.

“The opening of Taiora: QE II allowed us to provide a solution for these groups but . . . balancing this need with other groups, including individual pool users, is always challenging,” he said.

Mr Cox said it has accommodated public lane swimming at all other times, and ensured public swimming is available at other sites in the centre during the two time slots the 25m
pool is used for water polo activities.

Across all pools, 22 incidents of code browns have been recorded.

Chairwoman Kim Money said there is clearly a demand for both public use of the pool and groups.

“It would be really good to understand from staff how they are accommodating,” she said.

•HAVE YOUR SAY: Are you happy for the 25m pool at Taiora QE II Recreation and Sport Centre to be closed off to the public? Email your views to georgia.oconnor@starmedia.kiwi