Peak Aquatic Industry Bodies back calls for upgrades to Pines Pool
Published on 17 May 2022
Frankston City Council continues to call on the Federal and State candidates in this year’s elections to help fund improvements to the Pines Forest Aquatic Centre and upgrade the 40 year old pool.
Frankston City Mayor Nathan Conroy, Royal Lifesaving Society CEO Justin Scarr and Aquatics & Recreation Victoria CEO Kathy Parton all threw their support behind the advocacy efforts.
Mayor Conroy said: “Frankston North is crying out for a modern facility and it’s time to upgrade Pines Pool for the people. We have hard evidence of the positive social and economic impacts pools can have on communities and I can’t think of an area more deserving or in need,” said the Mayor.
Recent research from Royal Life Saving Society – Australia and PricewaterhouseCoopers estimates the social, health and economic benefits of the Australian aquatic industry, including local public pools, are worth more than $9 billion.
The report also shows the aquatic industry:
- Is a driver of economic activity throughout Australia, employing the equivalent of 33,600 full time employees and adding $2.8 billion to gross domestic product (GDP);
- Is a generator of $2.5 billion in health benefits, including a reduction in the burden of disease, improved mental health outcomes, reduced absenteeism, and reduced childhood drowning; and
- Is a provider of $3.8 billion worth of social benefits including enhancing leisure time or creating increased life satisfaction, bringing people together, supporting more vulnerable groups and supporting early learning.
PricewaterhouseCoopers found the industry provided a social return on investment of $4.87 for every dollar spent operating an aquatic facility in a capital city or $2.18 in regional Australia.
Mayor Conroy said: “We see it time and again especially on our weekly Free Family Fridays – a no or low cost, healthy entertainment option for families, friends and communities.
“The chance to connect, learn a new skill, stay healthy and safe, build capacity as well as the ongoing potential for local training and jobs in an overlooked area of Frankston. Tick, tick, tick, tick! I can’t think why you wouldn’t get on board and fund this project.”
Aquatics & Recreation Victoria CEO, Kathy Parton, said: “Local swimming pools save lives. Access to purpose-built community facilities, like the proposed Pines Pool redevelopment, provides more opportunities to learn critical water safety skills and build a lifelong love of water.
“Providing improved facilities at local community pools is a key enabler to building water safety skills and awareness.
“Aquatics and Recreation Victoria is a proud supporter of local pools and see the redevelopment of local community aquatic and recreation facilities essential to ensure they continue to meet community needs.
“The proposed Pines Pool redevelopment project will support community access to purpose built facilities and ensure enhanced learning of the skills of water safety to help save lives.”
Royal Life Saving Society – Australia CEO, Justin Scarr, said: “Aquatic facilities and swim schools are important cultural institutions that provide many social, economic and health benefits to Australians of all ages.
“Accessible swimming pool infrastructure is critical in ensuring no child misses out on vital swimming and water safety education, which decreases the risk of drowning.”
In the lead up to this year’s federal and state elections, Frankston City Council is advocating on behalf of the community for Federal and State Government funding to transform the existing Pines Forest Aquatic Centre located at Monterey Reserve in Frankston North through an estimated $31 million redevelopment. Council has committed $10.3 million to the upgrade. It hopes to receive state and federal support to begin construction in 2024/25.
Mayor Conroy said: “With over $40 million in funding already committed by the federal government and opposition to pools in municipalities including the cities of Geelong, Glen Eira, Kingston and Casey, we know water safety, health and wellbeing is a priority. It’s now time for the Pines Pool and the Frankston North community to benefit from this focus.”
For more information Frankston City Council’s advocacy priorities and to stay up to date with the campaign visit: www.frankston.vic.gov.au/advocacy
Council’s advocacy efforts are part of the Council Plan to ensure Frankston is a healthy, safe and connected community.
Peninsula Leisure is a subsidiary company wholly owned by Frankston City Council and is charged with the management of Council’s two aquatic facilities, Peninsula Aquatic Recreation Centre and Pines Forest Aquatic Centre. It is committed to providing quality sports, recreation and leisure products and services with a focus on community engagement and innovation alongside a reputation for delivering exceptional service.