The man pressing for the Napier Aquatic Centre to remain at its current site in Napier says moving it will take it away from the community.

David Kamper says if you draw a 3km radius around each of the two sites, the current site in Onekawa and the new site on Prebensen Drive, it clearly shows more of the community lives close to Onekawa than Prebensen.

Seven schools sit inside the 3km radius of the Onekawa site, and three more are right on the periphery. Just one school is potentially inside the 3km radius at Prebensen Drive, and it's right on the periphery.

"It's pretty damning," Kamper said.

The map that David Kamper says proves a pool in Prebensen Dr would be in the wrong location.
The map that David Kamper says proves a pool in Prebensen Dr would be in the wrong location.

He said although there is growth near the Prebensen Drive site, there is also growth towards Te Awa, on the southern side of the city.

"It's taking it away from the area of the community that probably does need that facility, like Maraenui and those sort of areas."

Not everyone agrees with Kamper however. Councillor Keith Price says that, when making a decision, it is important to look at all the facts.

He said a decent part of the area surrounding the Onekawa site is the Onekawa industrial area.

"What I look at is the figures."

He said the population within the two areas barely differed, and there was a lot of projected growth in the Prebensen Drive area.

He also noted that, in terms of land mass, Napier was a very small city which makes it easy to get around.

"There are farms bigger than Napier."


The issue has proved a difficult decision for council.

The most recent vote, whether council should re-consult with the community, was a seven-six vote against.

Councillor Richard McGrath, one of the councillors in favour of keeping the pool in Onekawa, said he would like to see the issue parked until after the upcoming local government elections.

"To a degree it's been rushed through to try to get it in before July because then councils can't make decisions between July and October because of the election.

"Maybe it becomes an election issue ... the new council should probably decide whether they want to move ahead with it."

A spokesperson for Napier City Council said the number of residents in the area, as well as facilities like schools, were only one part of the equation.


Criteria included costs, size, whether the land was owned by NCC, whether it was accessible, and whether there was space for future developments.

"The new site met this criteria, including being 7ha in size, being close to Park Island and the growing Parklands residential area, and the future Mission development."