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Council agrees €10m rebuild of swimming pool

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 Glenalbyn Swimming Pool

Glenalbyn Swimming Pool

Glenalbyn Swimming Pool

ONE of Dublin's oldest swimming pools is to get a €10m major rebuild after councillors opted against cheaper refurbishment works.

Glenalbyn Swimming Pool, which has been at the heart of the Stillorgan Community in south Dublin for 41 years, was forced to shut its doors in mid-December after an engineer's report raised serious public safety concerns amid fears the roof would collapse.

It has remained closed by management company DLR Leisure Services ever since despite a huge outcry from locals who demanded the pool be reopened.

Work on the swimming pool has been earmarked for some time and last year €5m was set aside for the roof which had a life span of 25 years when built in the 1970s.

REFURBISHMENT

At a meeting of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council this week, it was decided the current building would be demolished and a much larger structure with additional features be constructed.

A report on the rebuild will be presented to the council in March and agreement will also have to be reached with Kilmacud Crokes GAA club who currently own the access routes to the swimming pool.

The new building, which will cost €9.3m plus design costs, will be three times the size of the existing structure and in addition to a new 25m pool will boast a second floor housing four exercise studios.

The new building will also be more accessible for those with disabilities.

Councillors rejected an option to refurbish the building at a cost of €4.6m while another recommendation by the council's environment director to carry out a review of other possible locations for the construction was also turned down.

Local Cllr Gerry Horkan told the Herald it would cost as much as €700,000 to repair the roof and said it made more economic sense to rebuild.

STRUCTURE

"Even if you fix the roof the building is still 41 years old, the heating is 41 years old, the filtration system is 41 years old, and the integrity of the bowl is questionable. All of things are very old.

"You could be throwing half a million here, half a million there and you'd get a new build with another 41-year life for the price of all the patching. There comes a tipping point when it's just not economically viable to keep throwing good money after bad," he said

A report by DKM consultants found that Dublin is well behind its target of one swimming pool per every 50,000 people with figures from 2011 indicating the actual figure is twice the target.

The report states that if Glenalbyn was not replaced, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown would have one public pool for every 69,000 people.

hnews@herald.ie


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