Who will use it and when?
The facility will be run by Good Sports Motueka under an agreement with the Motueka High School Board of Trustees, in a way which will allow the school to continue its present use for curriculum activities (such as learning to kayak), or even expand them given the extended season.
There will be times when the school will reserve some lanes for classes, and occasionally the whole pool for events, but generally the pool's use will be according to schedules worked out between the operators and the school, season by season. In general swimming hours open to the public will be well publicised and known. The schedules will be worked out to best justify the capital expenditure and maintenance costs. Both the school (through the fees it currently pays for maintenance) and the community (through admission charges) will pay for pool operating costs.
It is expected that the school and Good Sports Motueka will settle on an arrangement whereby on Mondays to Fridays during term time, the public will have sole use of the main pool for most of the time, and use of the separate 20-metre therapeutic pool all the time.
School use during class times are expected to be limited to timetabled curriculum activities, and these will take place only at certain times during some days or weeks. Therefore once these timetables are set each year, it is expected that periods within school hours during which the pool will be available for community use will be known and advertised.
While having occasional times for school use only will make the deal not perfect, it will nevertheless be a great compromise to save huge costs, and there will be still plenty of time for public-only swimming. Plus eventually the separate 20-metre therapeutic pool year-round.
Use of the facility by 'Learn to Swim' classes, Motueka Swimming Club, other sporting clubs, disability groups, and casual groups and individuals will assist with financial performance and maximise the use of the facility.
Entry charges are budgeted to be struck at around $5 for adults and $3 for children. These are at roughly in the middle of the range of charges for similar pools in smaller NZ provincial centres. But they compare very favourably to the ASB Aquatic centre in Richmond, which currently has entry charges of $7 and $5.
It is anticipated that 'barrier-free' status be achieved with ramp access, and there will be appropriate changing areas for people with disabilities and families.
Focused programming will maximise use, revenue and thus sustainability. Programmes will aim to build loyalty, introduce new users and provide value-added activities for targeted groups through a wide range of programmes including aquacise, therapy, aquatic sports such as water polo, canoe polo, children, family and teenage programme sessions. 'Learn to swim' is seen as the most important programme element of the facility, contributing to both use and revenue.
Benefits for Motueka
As well as providing a year-round fun and fitness opportunity for the whole community, the survey showed that in particular a pool would benefit:
- our aging population - with hydrotherapy and exercise options
- baby, toddler and children swim classes - increasing safety
- young people for exercise and fun activity
- people with disabilities, injuries and illnesses - therapy
- tourists in the off-season or bad weather
- sportspeople for swim training.
Other benefits people saw was keeping local people in the local area and spending locally rather than having to travel to Richmond. There would also be savings in travel expenses, especially for those who train regularly at the Richmond aquatic centre.