Published: 17 June 2022
Today the old Naenae Pool is put to rest as a dawn blessing clears the way for construction to start on the new state-of-the-art aquatic and fitness centre.
The site of the new $68 million Naenae Pool and Fitness Centre was blessed in a Huringa Nuku lead by Kaitātari Tumuaki Maori, Matiu Jennings / Kura Moeahu, chair of Te Rūnanganui o Te Āti Awa and Waiwhetū Marae, and his wife, Alishia Moeahu.
Following the blessing, Mayor Campbell Barry turned the soil in a joint ceremony alongside Eastern Ward Councillor Andy Mitchell, Hutt City Council Chief Executive Jo Miller, Apollo Project Director Steve Hastie and Te Ātiawa, Ngāti Toa Rangatira, Ngāti Raukawa, Naenae resident Mike Hinton to mark the beginning of construction.
Mayor Campbell Barry said the rebuild will see the beating heart of Naenae returned to the community.
“I know many people are looking forward to swimming and exercising in the new facility when it opens – but, the pool means much more than that. This is one of the most significant projects Council has underway.
“This project will be transformational for the community and local businesses, with people coming from all over the Wellington region to use what will be a world class facility. It was this potential that helped us secure $27M in funding from central government to support the rebuild.”
Eastern Ward Councillor Andy Mitchell says he’s looking forward to the community coming back to life.
“Over the coming months we will begin to see Naenae Pool rise again and the ripples of that will be felt across the region as people, businesses and our community all get involved to bring our vision of the best community and sporting facility come to life,” he said.
Hutt City Council Chief Executive Jo Miller said the new pool was a wonderful example of Council and community working together to deliver a facility that Lower Hutt residents and many generations of swimmers and visitors to the pool can be proud of.
“Together Council and community have created the plans for a new facility. Connecting in this way means we will get a better facility that will enhance community wellbeing and provide work opportunities along the way. It’s great to see that our plans are now being put into place with our new construction partner.
“Our contract with Apollo has an important focus on sustainability. Already we’ve ensured around 80% of demolition material is reused or recycled, avoiding it being placed in landfill.”
In charge of construction is Apollo Projects, one of the country’s leading aquatic developers responsible for several pools across the country.
“We are excited to be partnering with Hutt City Council to deliver this Green Star Five targeted aquatic facility for Naenae and the wider Lower Hutt community,” said Apollo Project Director Steve Hastie. “We know these facilities will bring great enjoyment to current and future generations, and we are proud to be involved working with local businesses to deliver the new centre.”
Construction of the new pool will take two years and is due to open mid to late 2024.
Further information about the Pool and Fitness Centre can be found at hutt.city/naenaepool.