Thirroul Pool is set to re-open on the weekend, but the work is not over yet.
Maintenance is set to begin on one of the wall panels around the popular saltwater pool.
The new project will see the removal and replacement of one of the exterior wall panels on the pool’s eastern side.
The panel, next to the showers and lifeguard facilities, was secured last season with a reinforcing beam and structural plywood as a precaution after cracks appeared in the brick panel’s render. It’s believed the cracks are the result of movement of sand under the concourse which has reduced the wall’s structural integrity.
“This wall is believed to have been built over 40 years ago and is a significant part of the look and feel, and the social fabric of this precinct,’’ says Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery. “As part of the work, there will be a like-for-like replacement with what is currently here to preserve the historic value of this location.’’
Council’s heritage team has reviewed the plans, and the project is expected to take about six weeks to complete. It includes the demolition of a section of the brick wall and concourse, the installation of piles and new footings for the brick wall section and the replacement of the concourse and brick wall.
The repairs are the latest phase of work in the Thirroul precinct, which are due to be finished by summer.
The other projects underway or completed include repairs and maintenance to the pools, including the replacement of 150 broken pool tiles, repairs to the expansion joints, the re-grouting of the main pool and the application of a non-slip coating for the toddler’s pool ramp.
In addition, Council has re-lined the pools’ outlet pipes under the concourse within the pool precinct, and work continues on the replacement of the pools’ aged intake pipe at the southern end of Thirroul Beach. These intake pipes on the beach date back to World War II.
“The pipes on the southern end of the beach run some 70 metres out to sea and are used to draw in fresh saltwater for the pool,” says Councillor Bradbury. “The old ones were more than 75 years old and well due for an upgrade,’’.
“While work will continue in this precinct for the rest of spring, we’re working hard to reopen the pool on Saturday (19 October).
The last segment of the intake lines will be installed this week and testing of the pumping equipment will begin.
“We know Thirroul is a much-loved beach by locals and a popular daytrip location for people from across the Illawarra and further afield. These upgrades will ensure the precinct is in tip-top working order for the summer months.’’
The work on the panel and the promenade will be carried out on between 7am and 6pm, Monday-Saturday.
The pool is scheduled to reopen on Saturday 19 October, and will remain open while the work on the promenade, wall and intake lines is completed.