Development of an Aquatic and Leisure Strategy

Moreland pools collage Council’s first Aquatic and Leisure Strategy sets a course for Council’s six aquatic facilities over the coming 20 years.

Development of the Strategy considered current and future population demographics, the catchment and role of each pool, the condition and usage of each pool, and considerable community feedback.

Key features of the Strategy 

The Strategy recommends providing:

  • One major level facility (Coburg Leisure Centre), which includes a range of aquatic and dry health and wellness facilities.
  • Three district level facilities (Brunswick Baths, Oak Park Leisure Centre and Fawkner Leisure Centre) each providing a range of aquatic and dry facilities.
  • Two local level seasonal outdoor pools (Pascoe Value Outdoor Pool and Coburg Olympic Swimming Pool) which provide aquatic facilities to a local catchment.

In order for Council to deliver this Strategy, an overall investment of approximately $120 million is required over the next 20 years (or $179 million escalated). The largest investment proposed is the redevelopment of the Coburg Leisure Centre, to ensure it can cater for the growth in Merri-bek’s south. A significant allocation is also provided for Fawkner Leisure Centre.

Providing public pools is expensive and this strategy allocates finite resources to the pools which service the greatest and broadest public catchment, while providing maintenance to the two pools which serve the smallest catchments, to keep them open and running.

This strategy and long term financial plan fully funds the operations, maintenance and renewal of all 6 pools over the 20 year horizon of this strategy. Council will need to raise $11.6 million ($14.1 million escalated) within the next 5 years to implement the upgrade of Fawkner Leisure Centre and a further $40.7 million ($67.6 million escalated) within the next 15 years to fund the Coburg Leisure Centre redevelopment. There are plans in place to raise these funds in order to work towards these important goals.

Council is currently spending $27.3 million on redeveloping the Oak Park Aquatics Centre. Unline some other municipalities, Council received no financial support for this project from the State Government and it had to be funded entirely from rates.

Due to the investment required and changing nature and use of aquatic and leisure facilities, the Strategy will be reviewed in 5 year increments to allow for any adjustments.

The Aquatic and Leisure Strategy 2018-38 was endorsed by Council on 13 June 2018.

Download the Aquatic and Leisure Strategy 2018-38 (PDF 2Mb).

Consultation feedback

Following community consultation on the draft Strategy, between 15 December 2017 and 18 February 2018, 67 submissions were received and a special hearing was held on the 20 March 2018.

Primary themes of the submissions were:

  • greater investment in all pools
  • less investment in Coburg Leisure Centre
  • redevelop Pascoe Vale Outdoor Pool
  • heat Coburg Olympic Swimming Pool, and
  • provide greater certainty to future of outdoor pools.

Some minor alterations to the recommendations of the strategy, were made to take into account the feedback, however the majority of the Strategy remains consistent with the draft.

Further information

See Pooling our resources for an active Merri-bek (media release)

If you require any further information please contact Aquatic and Leisure services on 9240 1111 or email us.


There are some documents that are only available as PDFs on this page. If you have trouble opening or viewing a PDF document, you can contact us through our Contact page and we will arrange to provide the information in a format that suits your needs. You can also go to our Accessibility page to find out further details.