Pool closure to be reviewed


Goya Dmytryshchak

Hobsons Bay council has voted to review a decision to close the Laverton pool, and will go out to community consultation on the matter.

A petition signed by 1123 people had called on council to reconsider its 2019 decision to close the Laverton Swim and Fitness Centre.

Originally called Laverton Memorial Swimming Pool, it opened in June 1976 and was dedicated to those who had served in various conflicts in which Australia had been involved.

In 2019, the former council endorsed a $64 aquatic strategy, which recommended building a $40 million pool at Comben Reserve in Altona Meadows and replacing the Laverton pool at McCormack Park with a $3 million water play and youth facility.

Last week councillors resolved to undertake “a detailed community consultation process as part of the McCormack Park Master Plan to identify the future needs of the community for this space”.

First-term councillor Matt Tyler told the meeting that many people across Laverton were unaware of the prior council’s decision to close the pool and build a water park.

“While this is a challenging situation, I’m hopeful that this next step means awareness about the decision made by the prior council continues to increase, and we gain a better understanding of the community’s needs to inform both the McCormack Park Master Plan as well as how best to ensure accessibility to any new aquatic centre,” he said.

“Stage one of the consultation will begin soon and I’d really encourage people to participate and contribute.”

Cr Diana Grima, also serving her first term, told the meeting that her family had been among residents who helped establish the pool.

“The community raised funds to get this pool to be there,” she said.

“It was under [former] Wyndham [council].

“My father, my grandmother, with the community, raised funds for the pool.

“Before I was elected, I did not agree that a water park is suitable for the needs of the people who are actually utilising the Laverton swimming pool, including myself for the last 30 years.”