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Thames’ Centennial Pool needs to be removed by 2027. PHOTO: KELLEY TANTAU

Sites for Thames pool shortlisted

A long list of potential sites for both an aquatic facility and separate sports facility was presented to the Thames Community Board and project stakeholders back in May.
But while the list won’t be made publicly available, council’s group manager operations Bruce Hinson said “in essence”, any open space in the Thames area that was large enough was considered.
Many of the sites were no longer under consideration, he said, but those that were had now been filtered into a short list.
“The short-listed sites are being assessed against criteria that include property size, topography, ownership, accessibility, visibility, mana whenua input and more.
“It’s very challenging in terms of both projects to find suitable sites given the topography of the Thames area and the limited area of developable land,” Mr Hinson said.
The community board and project stakeholders will be briefed this week on the progress of the feasibility studies and the potential sites.
Around mid-October, the board will review the sites.
In Late October/November, council will go to the community to ask for feedback.
“The results of that feedback will be included in the report to the board in their December public meeting,” Mr Hinson said. “The report will recommend the preferred site/s.”
The feasibility study to assess site options for sports facilities for Thames hopes to address the issue of Rhodes Park being flooded on a regular basis.
According to council, the study was focused on assessing the best long-term location and achievability for the provision of sports facilities in Thames. It said the quality of existing sports facilities at Rhodes Park was perceived as poor, with 88 per cent of people supporting an improved sports facility.
Meanwhile, location was deemed “critical” for a new Thames pool; however, there was “also good evidence” to support Thames being the location for a sub-regional facility which included the Hauraki district.
Currently, 40 per cent of visits to the Thames Centennial Pool were by people outside of Thames, council said.
DETAILS: More information on both the Thames Sub-Regional Aquatic Facilities Project and the Thames Sports Partnership Project can be found on the TCDC website.