One Up For The Aquatic Centre!

The Aquatic Centre has had over 220,000 visitors in its first year, is meeting the needs of the community, and is very popular with swimmers and recreation users. Kapiti Councillor, Diane Ammundsen

A highly successful year

By Roger Childs

InflatablesAfter spirited public debate, eventual Council backing and vigorous fund raising, the Coastlands Aquatic Centre opened its doors a year ago on Saturday 10 August 2013.

The project faced problems early last year, notably rescheduling after the collapse of the construction company Mainzeal and the unholy row over access for the disabled.

However, a year on, visits have exceeded expectations: more than 230,000 people have been through the doors.

So to celebrate the first birthday, there will be a $1 only charge for all the services this Sunday, 10 August 2014.

A long time coming

Backers for a state of the art Aquatic Centre for the rapidly growing Kapiti District were active from late last century. Former Councillor and local sportsman Peter Ellis was an enthusiastic proponent of such a project from the start. But there was major debate over funding, how the millions required would be found and whether the centre should be a KCDC priority.

The local swimming club and other supporters of a centralised Kapiti facility were quick to point out that the district was lagging behind regional centres such as Taupo, Rotorua, Wanganui, Palmerston North and Masterton.

The only covered public swimming pool for the 40,000 plus population south of the Otaki River was the aging and increasingly inadequate Raumati Pool.

Aquatic centreAfter 2007, Mayor Jenny Rowan’s council got on board and fund-raising proceeded apace. Many local businesses and sporting groups, as well as hundreds of individuals and families supported the cause.

There was debate over whether there should be an Qlympic size 50m pool and if one or two hydroslides should be built. In the end it was decided to construct a multi-purpose 25m x 25m pool and a single slide to help keep costs down. Construction got underway in 2011 and the Aquatic Centre became a reality a year ago.

Catering for the whole community

Our diverse community of all ages and abilities is looked after through our range of activities and facilities. Brent Harvey

  • Main poolThe main 25m x 25m pool has a four lane movable floor and caters for lane swimming, water sports such as underwater hockey and water polo, lane walking and Aquafit classes.
  • The Toddlers Pool up to 0.7m deep has sloping access to the waterfall and in-built water squirters and jets.
  • The 15m x 8m Learners Pool ranges in depth from 0.7m – 1.2m with in-built ramp at 32 degrees. This facility can also be used for hydrotherapy.
  • The well used Hydroslide is 8 metres high,and 70 metres long.
  • There is also an on-site spa and sauna for adults.

Nemo’s Café is a popular food stop to the right of the entranceway.

As well as Aquafit classes, which have attracted over 11,000 people so far, there is an Aqua Ease programme and the usual Learn to Swim classes. The waterslide has been popular, as expected, and up to the end of June, over 26,000 slide passes had been sold.

Celebrating in style

So on Sunday 10 August there will be just a $1 entry fee to do whatever takes your fancy:

Kids swimming~ paddling
~ swimming
~ playing around on the inflatables
~ using the bombing zone and dunk tank
~ hydroslides
~ using the adults spa and sauna.

There are also plenty of family activities and prizes to be won.

It’s a great way to celebrate the first birthday of a multi-purpose facility, which was a long time coming, but has exceeded expectations.