Famous rooftop pool in Dublin’s Northside Shopping Centre to close

Dublin City Council have instead suggested to relocate swimming services to a new pool attached to the existing Kilmore Recreation Centre at a cost of €10m

Northside Shopping Centre, Coolock. Photo: Kyran O'Brien

Feasibility Study Proposals. Pic: DCC

Amy BlaneyIndependent.ie

The rooftop pool in the Northside Shopping Centre in Dublin is set to close as it requires upgrades of €5m which “does not represent good value for public monies.”

Dublin City Council have operated Coolock Swimming Pool on the Oscar Traynor Road for the last 50 years, and said a significant upgrade is needed to bring the facility up to modern standards.

The local authority have instead suggested a proposal to relocate swimming services to a new swimming pool attached to the existing Kilmore Recreation Centre at a cost of €10m.

The recreation centre is located about 300 metres from the Northside Shopping Centre off the Oscar Traynor Road.

The council said the existing stand-alone swimming pool does not allow other sports and activities to be offered to the community, thereby reducing its attractiveness and limiting usage.

There are few options available to expand the facility due to the limited space, while options are also limited to improve energy consumption at the facility.

DCC commissioned a report in 2022 to examine the works required to modernise the facility, including replacement of the roof structure, significant upgrade of the pool and deck, new plant and electrical upgrades and the installation of new changing, staff and toilet facilities.

The report identified a cost in the region of €5m to carry out these upgrades.

“Stand-alone pools were of their time, they are extremely expensive to run, and in particular energy costs are prohibitive and unsustainable,” said the local authority.

“The investment of €5 million in a service that will continue to be limited and confined by its location does not represent good value for public monies,” it added.

Feasibility Study Proposals. Pic: DCC

The new facility proposed at the Kilmore Recreation Centre, would include the installation of a new 25 metre, six-lane pool with associated changing facilities, a new gym and studio and a new reception area to link the pool and existing facility.

As part of this development there would also be an option to install two all-weather playing fields which would be managed by DCC for use by the community.

The modern facility would reduce the environmental impact through the installation of energy saving measures.

However, the installation of a pool at Kilmore would require the relocation of the Pigeon Club.

The council said the swimming pool provided an “essential recreational service” to the local community and to many local schools and clubs over the past 50 years.

DCC holds a 150-year lease on the pool from the owners of the shopping centre and pays an annual service charge. The average annual expenditure over the past five years is in the region of €300,00, including wages, energy, upkeep and service charges.

The total cost of the new facility would cost €10m and the local authority is currently examining possible funding options.

If funding is secured, a planning application will be submitted in 2024.

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