4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News

4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News
4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News Led by John "Cueball" Mackenzie

09 July 2013

TOBRUK POOL RECONSTRUCTION HUGE EXPENSE FOR VERY FEW USERS AND "ICONIC DESIGN" REMINDS COMMUNITY OF APPROVED ENTERTAINMENT PRECINCT CANCELLED BY BOB MANNING

When the Val Schier Council first proposed the Entertainment Precinct as the replacement Civic Theater, Cueball John MacKenzie couldn't get the attack dogs wound up fast enough.

The first attacks were on the proposed designs.  These iconic designs were developed to reflect the tropical urban-ness of Cairns, but were derided by the hillbillies as "monuments to Val".  The concept of iconic design became a hammer that the few used to beat the whole project with.  Much of the beatup came from Mayor Bob "Sleepy" Manning and his disUnity colleagues.
SPENDING MONEY ON "ICONS" FINE FOR
BOB MANNING & NOT FOR VAL SCHIER?
We have now had thrust upon us the $21M expansion of the Tobruk Pool, a facility that has barely 32,124 customers a year - and with likely most of them regular visitors, this is probably only 2,000 people in the city.  So it's good economics to spend $21M on this few people?   What happened to the "frugal" Council focused on investments "that stack up".   

By comparison, TicketLink sells 120,000 tickets per year with almost 100,000 attending shows at the "Tobruk" Civic Theater, along with another 10,000 or so involved "behind the scenes" (orchestras, musicals, Eisteddfod, plays, dance productions, etc).  A huge swath of the community.  

Not a couple thousand people like the Tobruk Pool.  $100M for a new theater divided by the number of users - cheap infrastructure compared to this Tobruk Pool boondoggle.

Council then claims Stage 3 of this Tobruk proposal will be
paid for by outside business investors, as the location for a health club (in a city that sees health clubs go in and out of business almost daily).  A rudimentary business planning guide suggests that a $5M health club, at a membership price of $14/week, would need to have 22,000 paying members to be profitable for the investor.  
COUNCIL STAFF PROUD OF "ICONIC
FACILITY" THAT WILL
ENHANCE THE CITY.

We're going to need a couple thousand more carparks. . . .

This Council seems to have a lot of difficulty doing its sums - the cost:benefit analysis alone shows this $21M a horrible investment of what we're told are dwindling Council funds.  But hell, we are "Creating and Icon"!

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

So what happened to the "user pays' philosophy the Hilbillies are so fond of when it comes to the CEP ?

CBD Warrior said...

I too was stunned at the low number of users at the Tobruk. Council analysis needs to look into why the numbers are so low, relative to ten or twenty years ago. I would guess more home/apartment swimming pools and less population in the area around the pool make it unlikely to ever be more than a white elephant.

Tony Hillier said...

As someone who has swam laps in the Tobruk Pool every other day for the best part of 25 years, I will no doubt be accused of having a biased perspective. Yet I feel compelled, on behalf of a not inconsiderable number of fellow regulars, to defend Council's decision to renovate the city's only dedicated 50 metre swimming facility.

Whether a $21 million extension is justified is another matter. I certainly take HW's point that the pro rata value of this outlay compares poorly with the yield that would have been derived from the Schier Council's Entertainment Precinct, but I would ask him and readers to take into account the immeasurable benefit to the community in terms of health and well-being. It certainly rates as an infinitely more worthwhile proposition than the adjacent International Tennis Stadium, which is scandalously under-utilised.

Although I haven't studied the plan for Tobruk Pool, I'm sure a cheaper, if less grand, facility can be developed that provides adequately for the swimming public's needs. While the Olympic Pool and the antiquated changing rooms clearly need repairing and upgrading, the 25-metre heated pool, which was added less than a decade ago, is fine as it stands.

Ed in Edge HIll said...

Tony Hillier, I agree with you that the Tobruk Pool should be refurbished, for all of the good reasons you cite. I suspect HBW agrees with you too - and in fact I like the plan and like the idea of a nice-looking, iconic building on Sheridan Street. But these cretins were elected telling us it was "back to basics" for Cairns. Then the first shot out of the box they want to splurge on some facility that their own brochures boast is a "big spend". It's a double standard, and while you can defend the spending on the pool you can't avoid the rank stupidity exhibited by Bob Manning in knocking back $38M on the CBD, and almost $100M on the new theatre.

Tony Hillier said...

Your parting remark is dead right, Ed in Edge Hill. Manning, King and their visionless and supine cronies have sold the city down the proverbial Swanee with their stubborn and illogical intransigence over the badly needed CBD makeover and Entertainment Precinct. It pains to think of what could have been.

Anonymous said...

The ManCano!

ruby said...

I believe a renovated Tobruk Baths would result in a huge increase in users.

Anonymous said...

I went there a few times before the Lagoon was opened. Now I take the kids there for free!

Emma Chisit said...

Maybe so,Ruby. But this whole project smacks of "anything but the CEP" and buggar the rest of the community who would dearly love to see a new Entertainment Precinct -the small section of the community who use the pool no doubt would love a new facility for all the reasons put forward by Tony, but surely the numbers don't stack up and as a ratepayer I shudder to think of the next hike in our already hefty rate payments. Thank you HBW for bringing this to our attention -I despair at the shocking lack of coverage by our (not so) local media and the poor standard of our local reps both State, Federal and the CRC.

RobArt said...

The figure don't add up. From the cairns post article we are told CCC will put $4.8m (2014/15)and $4.7m (2015/16) with an extra $6m externally funded for stages 1 & 2 and a further $5m for stage 3 funded through private investment. This totals $20.5m so where does the $21.7m cash splash come from.

It should also be remembered that Val Schier 2012 election promise was for a $10m upgrade to Tobruk pool.($4.8M + $4.7m = $9.5m)

Argus Tuft said...

The Tobruk pool upgrade was firmly on the agenda of a returned Val Schier council. Cairns could have had the CEP cake and the Tobruk icing. all we've got now is overpaid Councillors, overpaid zombie managers and unsustainable budgets for essential maintenance. Wayne King and Captain (Dad's Army) Manning couldn't deliver a pizza let alone a program. This grand design announcement is pure fantasy to distract us from the failures so far and those yet to come. Bullshit Bob and his puppet masters have royally rooted the residents. It remains to be seen how long they'll bend over and take it.

Smithfield Sam said...

RobArt - you've got to add the $1.2M that's in the current budget - money to upgrade the car park.

Yes, that's right - we're upgrading the parking FIRST only to get damaged during pool reconstruction. This council is run well and truly by idiots.

Anonymous said...

WTF is going on with this council, they have installed new exercise equipment on the esplanade. Is this why our fucken rates are going up? wot about the suburbs we need footpaths and zebra crossings so our kids don't have to play Russian roulette, with traffic at Edmonton. FMD all they do is look after the city and tourists what about us ratepayers in the suburbs. Where can I get a screwdriver.

Anonymous said...

Bob did an "interview" on 4CA this morning before TalkBack. He mumbled and mumbled and hadn't seen this and hadn't read that and wanted to sit back and wait and didn't really know about such and such and on it went...Then the talk went to NRL and he suddenly fired up. He had all sort of things to say. The fact that 16000 attended a game in Cairns ass opposed to only 9000 in Mackay was proof of well... what exactly I don't know. Something to do with Far North QLD or maybe only North QLD or maybe it was just Cairns...he ended up tying himself into knots (or maybe nods).Then he rambled on about free-to-air and pay tv and all the games he had watched and on it went...Not strange he can't do much for Cairns. he'd much rather sit in a fat chair and watch footty. Still ,I think the Tobruk reno is a good thing, but that doesn't absolve this dithering council of shonky real estate salesmen and second hand car dealers form the blame of losing millions in funding. As was pointed out by others, we could have had it all. By the way has anybody ever heard anything from Jessie Richardson ? Does she actually exist ?

Anonymous said...

Apparently the last Budget also included plans for a much needed Orchid House at the Botanic Gardens -a sum of $500.000 was mentioned -has anyone heard/seen this?

shanghai said...

um the problem is getting our fat arse kids off the couch smoking bongs and playing video games or watching porn stop cuddling them to death and they might go swimming or play tennis or fishing or go bushwalking im flat out now looking for a Caucasian of European descent that plays nrl now but that's our problem weve became fat lazy and stupid and drunk have a look in the mirror do u like what u see ?

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

max o'hallaran from division 7? is a life member of the pool..... any coincedence there? ....wouldnt at all be suprised...with the pay rise gonna see some expensive speedo's aye...

Anonymous said...

Chinese airline has already suspended the much heralded flights to Cairns. A stunned Mayor was asked for comment on channel 7, but, as usual, knwew nothing about it and nothing to say.

Anonymous said...

The three stooges Sleepy, Baldy and Greedy - Manning, Mckenzie and King -are such an asset to Cairns aren't they? Like teats are on a bull. And about as useful.

Bob R. said...

So State 3 will be funded by private enterprise hey? Has Manning got the investors lined up for that? Or will that be left to the ratepayers after Manning has pissed off to enjoy a self-indulgent luxurious retirement somewhere. I don't like the sound of this.

Chris Wighton said...

I too will be labelled somewhat biased towards a Tobtuk refurb being a regular user of the pool, but post an accident that left me a paraplegic I think the inclusion of a therapeutic element to the upgrade is a must.
This is a chance to create a unique facility that could both attractive to our international visitors in it's style - Japenese Onsen for example - and practically useful for an aging population in it's therapeutic focus.