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Byron Shire
May 26, 2024

Ocean pool a step closer for Ballina

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An ocean pool in Ballina is just one of the ideas contained in a regional centre strategy endorsed by the Ballina Shire Council yesterday. (Image Wikipedia)
An ocean pool in Ballina is just one of the ideas contained in a regional centre strategy endorsed by the Ballina Shire Council. (Image Wikipedia)

A push to build an ocean pool along the coast at Ballina took another step forward yesterday with the Ballina Shire Council allocating $15,000 to complete technical reports.

Lennox Head-based councillor Jeff Johnson had lodged a notice of motion on behalf of the Ballina Ocean Pool Committee in an effort to attract funding for engineering and environmental reports.

‘The Ballina Ocean Pool committee meet regularly and have gained widespread community support for an ocean pool at Shelly Beach,’ Cr Johnson said.

 ‘While we have been able to pull together an amazing team of local professionals there are obviously some costs involved with preparing some of the technical reports such as the Coastal Processes report from a Geomorphologist.’

The rock shelf between Shelley Beach and Lighthouse Beach has been identified as the most appropriate place for an ocean pool.

‘The location of the proposed pool has been surveyed and a draft report has been completed by students from the Australian Maritime College in Tasmania,’ he said.

‘The Marine Biology department at Southern Cross University, headed up by Professor Peter Harrison, have committed to completing the necessary environmental reports (EIS).

‘A local planning consultant has prepared the brief that is now being refined and the reports organized.’

‘As part of the brief the services of a geomorphologist (coastal processes) and engineer (Ocean Pool expertise) are needed to complete these reports.’

With funding now allocated for the reports, Cr Johnson said the reports would hopefully be finished this year and presented to the council for consideration either this year or early next year.

‘Hopefully construction would begin next year.

‘We’ve been reliant on volunteers, had site surveyed

‘We’ve surveyed and marked out the site. Local artist Mark Waller will be doing an artist’s impression of what the pool would look like. Should have that in a couple

‘The ocean pool will certainly be an attraction for tourists. In Ballina we have lots of  families visit the area so the ocean pool would provide a safe swimming experience for young and old,’ he said.

Inside the former Shelley Beach Cafe at Ballina. (supplied)
Inside the former Shelley Beach Cafe at Ballina. (supplied)

Cr Johnson was also successful in a motion related to the former Shelley Beach cafe, which would overlook the proposed ocean pool.

‘Council unanimously supported my motion to conduct an urgent building inspection with the view to demolish the dilapidated building that in my opinion is unsafe and an eyesore in an iconic location on the headland at Shelly Beach,’ he said.
 
‘This building should be demolished due to the poor condition of the structure. Sections of walls have been smashed, their building is covered with graffiti and there is evidence of squatters taking up camp there. 
 
‘Council as the land owner needs to take responsibility for the state of the building and organize for it to be demolished. The sooner the new café is built and up and running the better. This is an iconic spot and very popular with both locals and visitors to the area. ‘

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2 COMMENTS

  1. About time .. Sydney has them everywhere (Bondi, Bronte, Clovelly, Coogee, etc … safe salt water swimming areas, … Hurry up and build it 😉 🙂 It would be even better if there were a few of them to cater for all those who will use them.

  2. Kirra Rainbow would be great!!
    I used to walk to “My Ocean Pool” 5 yrs ago when I lived in Sydney at Freshwater Beach for 22 years It was my favourite place and the beach !
    They are a beautiful asset and lit up until 9pm in summer is so refreshing and pretty!!!

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