Plans for the development of the Bundaberg Regional Aquatic Centre have been welcomed by local health providers for its ability to improve wellbeing and fitness.
The development, which is set to begin construction later this year, will feature a 50 metre, heated, undercover competition pool, a 25-metre heated indoor pool, an indoor program pool, a café and spectator area.
The space aims to provide an area for athletes to train, for people of all abilities to access and for the whole community to enjoy.
Ben Heidenreich, director at Coral Coast Physiotherapy and Allied Health Clinic, said the facility would increase the level of service provided to the community and meet the long-term growth in Bundaberg over the next 20 to 30 years.
“This will be an asset for the region and enable Bundaberg to host regional and state level events and training camps in lead up to the 2032 Brisbane Olympics,” he said.
“The additional pools and fitness, teaching and therapy rooms proposed as part of the project will ensure the region is able to deliver comprehensive fitness and health services suited to its requirements.
“These facilities will provide improved amenity for locals and visitors alike, while having a positive impact on both economic and community activity.”
Ben said Council's plan for the aquatic centre would, in particular, provide valuable social, community and tourism infrastructure, create sustainable jobs, and support economic development.
He said it would also assist those who needed to access water for health reasons.
“We have two allied health clinics in the region that provide physiotherapy, occupational therapy, exercise therapy, speech pathology and podiatry services to our community,” Ben said.
“To date there has been a real lack of quality aquatic facilities in the region, and residents haven’t been able to fully benefit from the benefits of aquatic based therapies.
“We currently provide services to NDIS, DVA, MyAgedCare and private patients and all would benefit further from having adequate aquatic-based treatment.”
Aquatic centre health benefits for community
Ben said the pool area would also provide an integral training ground for the sports sector and the community as a whole, no matter the skillset or age.
“We provide services to local sporting organisations such as the Central Queensland Sports Academy,” he said.
“They would greatly benefit from having a national standard aquatic facility to help improve their training standards with the goal of representing their state and nation in their chosen sports.
“Providing a contemporary facility that achieves modern standards for equitable access, including ramp and sling access into the pool, aligning with requirements for Bundaberg’s ageing demographic.
“We are really hopefully this project happens and can have access to the facility to expand our allied health service delivery.”