Aquatic Centre 50m pool construction set to begin



3 September 2020

Rotorua Lakes Council has approved the tender for the renovations of the 50m pool at Rotorua Aquatic Centre.  

Contractors are due to start setting up at the centre from Friday 11 September.

Rotorua Lakes Council’s Operations Group Manger Jocelyn Mikaere says that this has always been an important project for the community and it’s exciting that work is about to get underway.

“The upcoming improvements are just the start of the journey to create a facility that our community will be proud of. The upgrades will build upon the benefits that the centre provides to Rotorua as a place for recreation and sport and, most importantly, for gaining confidence in and around water.

“The 50m pool is a regional sports asset and we are looking to enhance that offering to attract more visitors and users from across the Bay of Plenty and Central North Island. This is a major milestone and we look forward to opening the upgraded facility in the new year.”

This work is a key component of the wider plan to redevelop the Rotorua Aquatic Centre. The 50m pool is the only heated outdoor pool of that length in New Zealand that is available for use all year round making it an attractive facility for athlete training camps, tournaments and a variety of aquatic activities. The upgrades will not only improve the experience for locals using the pool, but will bolster the centre’s offerings as a high-quality training and competition facility.

The upgrade work includes:

  • renovating the pool structure to increase the depth to 1.4 metres to meet International Swimming Federation depth standards
  • adding extra length to accommodate a bulkhead which can be shifted to create two 25 metre pools
  • a new filtration system
  • a PoolPod accessibility lift
  • a new decking pool surround.

The work to renovate the 50m pool will take approximately 20 weeks and pool users will need to use the indoor facilities during this time. The outdoor pool is planned to be available for pool users again early in 2021. The Aquatic Centre’s management company, CLM, is working with clubs and others with regular bookings to accommodate each group as much as possible.

Swimming Bay of Plenty’s Chair Bronwen Radford says their organisation is looking forward to seeing the renovated 50m pool.

“We are incredibly excited to see the redevelopment of the 50m Aquatic Centre pool. Rotorua is well-known amongst our swimming colleagues from around New Zealand as a fantastic place to come and train.

“This redevelopment is not just about the competitive arm of swimming but more importantly, it benefits the local clubs and all the community-based programmes currently operating out of the 50m pool. This redevelopment will give more members of our community the opportunity to get out, be active, and experience swimming as individuals or as a family.”

The upgrade is part of the $7.5 million in funding that Council set aside in the 2018-2028 Long-term Plan to redevelop the Aquatic Centre. Council proposed a phased approach to the redevelopment of the centre starting with the areas that need the most attention.

For more information about the project visit

Aquatic Centre key facts:

  • For the last two years, the centre has recorded more than 330,000 visits per year.
  • In the 2019/2020 year, the centre had more than 7,000 enrolments in Learn to Swim programmes
  • The Aquatic Centre hosts 12 family fun days a year to encourage families to come and enjoy an affordable day out at the pools
  • In the 2019/2020 year 3,780 children attended a water skills programme through their school
  • The 50m pool was built in 1974 making it almost 50 years old.
Page reviewed: 03 Sep 2020 9:30am