North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade approved!

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North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade
The North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade has been approved by Council

North Sydney Olympic Pool will be given a new lease on life, after receiving development approval for an upgrade by the Sydney North Planning Panel. Check out all the new features and plans.


The North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade will now go ahead after an amended DA was approved. North Sydney Council will upgrade the existing 50m pool and extend and improve other facilities including the gym, 25m pool, children’s pool and the creche. Work will commence in October 2020, and is expected to take two years to complete.

The approval is welcome news to communities who feared the pool was at the end of its useful life, with the poor condition of the pool structure, concourse and grandstand.

Mayor Jilly Gibson said this was a joyous day for North Sydney residents and all users of the iconic pool.

She says the plans responded to the changing demographics of the North Sydney local government area, which has an increasing proportion of families with children and older residents.

“This is a win for our community, who have been behind this project the whole way,” she said. “It’s never easy to get a project of this scale over the line as there are many different opinions on what should be done.”

General Manager Ken Gouldthorp said the approval of the DA meant that the project could proceed to implementation and the redevelopment will now take place.

“The Pool is at the end of its useful life. The poor condition of the pool structure, concourse and grandstand have added additional focus to the project. We did not want to be forced to close the Pool for safety reasons without approved plans in place to upgrade the facility. Our architects will start work on the minor amendments requested so that we can move to the construction phase.”

North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade: Conditions

The DA approval has been granted with some conditions. These include:

  • Extending the sundeck across the roof of the café to the southern wall on Olympic Drive
  • Providing developed details for the entrance lobby and roof over the seating of the lower level café, designed to minimise the visual and physical impact of the structures
  • Amendments to the pedestrian access ramp on Olympic Drive to ensure it does not impede access to Luna Park

The Panel also supported the community request for additional shade over the children’s pool. While the approved design provides more shade than the existing shade structure over the children’s pool, Council as agreed to look at how additional shade could be provided that is sympathetic to the heritage and design.

North Sydney Olympic Pool upgrade and background:

The iconic North Sydney Olympic Pool was opened in 1936 to host the 1938 Empire Games.

Eighty-six world records have been set in its lanes by some of Australia’s best-known swimming legends, including Jon Konrads, Lorraine Crapp, Shane Gould and Dawn Fraser.

Here’s what to expect from the facilities:

  • 50m pool with dividing barrier function
  • 4 lane 25m indoor pool
  • Family leisure pool, with children’s interactive water play area
  • Warm water pool suitable for learn to swim, gentle exercise and hydrotherapy rehabilitation
  • Cafés on the ground and upper levels
  • Change facilities, including family change rooms
  • Grandstand with roof/shade structure, with capacity for 970 people
  • Expanded gym, which will allow for exercise classes as well as work-out equipment
  • Expanded crèche with outdoor play area
  • Improved accessibility including ramp entry to all pools

More outdoor fun for families:

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