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Good news for Firwood Road pool

NEARLY six years ago, the gates to Firwood Road Pool in Greenwood Park were shut, and to date, there’s still uncertainty as to when the pool will reopen to the community.

The municipal pool was closed in July 2017, with eThekwini Municipality hoping to attend to a leakage problem that had affected residents on Falkirk Avenue, directly behind the pool.

The positive news, however, is that the eThekwini Municipality has budgeted for the repairs in the next financial year.

eThekwini Municipality spokesperson Msawakhe Mayisela said the pool requires a budget of R40m in order for it to be functional again.

“The pool requires an estimated amount of R40m, according to our architectural services, for this pool to be fully functional,” he said.

“We are currently facing budgetary constraints, however, the pool is budgeted for in the next financial year – July 2023 to June 2024 – and in the coming years.

“We have to phase out the budget for the pool, therefore the rehabilitation work will also be phased out,” he said.

For years now, the publication has been on the pulse of this story, and at one stage, the City said the pool would open in 2021, but that has not happened.

Through Northglen’s regular news reports on the pool, it has been confirmed that there are budget constraints.

Andrew Akkers, a long-standing resident of the area, told Northglen News that it’s a disappointment that such a facility cannot be utilised by the community.

“We have to go to Durban North to use that pool. Our children have to walk or take a taxi there. It’s a pity that there’s a facility in our neighbourhood but we can’t use it,” he said.

In January 2021, Northglen News visited the site and saw that work had commenced but that it came to a grinding halt.

Fast forward to December last year, the Northglen News published another report, where Ward 34 councillor Bobby Maharajh said the pool would open this year.

Speaking to Northglen News last week, Maharajh said that the City was in the process of adjusting budgets, but there was still uncertainty as to when the pool would open again.

“For the past few years, there has been no money to repair the pool and upgrade the facility. There is serious damage to the pool, but it’s not just the pool that needs to be repaired; the entire facility needs an upgrade,” he said.