Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre Redevelopment Project

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Responding to the unprecedented challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic remains Council’s priority. As part of this effort, we are committed to progressing strategic capital works projects that will benefit the local economy.

The redevelopment of Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre is an important project that will boost the local economy and provide many jobs for local people as well as ensure residents have access to a welcoming and innovative space to exercise and socialise in. We are planning now so that NARC can meet the needs of the growing community for years to come.

The immediate spend on the renewal of NARC is projected to be $3M in the 20/21 draft budget, to continue the design phase of the project.

The $63.5M allocated for the renewal of NARC is spread throughout the life of the multi-year project and does not impact Council’s ability to support the community in response to the pandemic.

What’s happened so far?

The renewal of the Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre (NARC) is part of the Darebin Council Plan 2017–2021, supporting our goal to expand opportunities for participation and social connection through sport, physical activity and other leisure activities.

After community consultation and a feasibility study, the design concept was prepared.

You can still view the concept designs for the proposed renewal of NARC (on the right).

To find out more about the project including the community consultation, you can view the NARC project background document.

At the ordinary Council Meeting on Monday 17 August 2020. Council endorsed the procurement approach for the construction tender, which is to be a staged process commencing with seeking expressions of interest from suitable contractors. Advertising for expressions of interest is underway.

More details on the procurement process can be found in the Council Report.

What’s happening now?

Detailed designs are now being finalised. These include consideration of traffic impact, landscaping design and environmentally sustainable initiatives which will enable Council to deliver the NARC 6 Star Green Star certified design.

Design and construction of NARC is currently out to tender with shortlisted construction contractors, in line with Council’s Procurement Policy.

In the meantime, it’s “business as usual”. We will be keeping the programs and services at NARC operational for the next few months until at least mid-September, in line with the end of the third school term. Rest assured, swimming lessons and group fitness classes will be on for a few months yet!

What’s happening next:

Following the tender assessment process Council anticipates awarding the construction contract by September 2021, with the redevelopment project commencing in late 2021.

We will have more information on the exact closure date once the contract is awarded and NARC users and members will be given as much notice of this as possible.

Once the contractor has been appointed for NARC’s construction, we will provide further updates. Subscribe (on the right) to stay-up-to-date with the latest information.

If you have any questions about the redevelopment of Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre, please contact Darebin Council on (03) 8470 8303 or email leisure@darebin.vic.gov.au.

If you would like to speak to someone in your preferred language, please contact us or call 8470 8470 to be connected to a Language Aide or an interpreter.

Responding to the unprecedented challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic remains Council’s priority. As part of this effort, we are committed to progressing strategic capital works projects that will benefit the local economy.

The redevelopment of Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre is an important project that will boost the local economy and provide many jobs for local people as well as ensure residents have access to a welcoming and innovative space to exercise and socialise in. We are planning now so that NARC can meet the needs of the growing community for years to come.

The immediate spend on the renewal of NARC is projected to be $3M in the 20/21 draft budget, to continue the design phase of the project.

The $63.5M allocated for the renewal of NARC is spread throughout the life of the multi-year project and does not impact Council’s ability to support the community in response to the pandemic.

What’s happened so far?

The renewal of the Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre (NARC) is part of the Darebin Council Plan 2017–2021, supporting our goal to expand opportunities for participation and social connection through sport, physical activity and other leisure activities.

After community consultation and a feasibility study, the design concept was prepared.

You can still view the concept designs for the proposed renewal of NARC (on the right).

To find out more about the project including the community consultation, you can view the NARC project background document.

At the ordinary Council Meeting on Monday 17 August 2020. Council endorsed the procurement approach for the construction tender, which is to be a staged process commencing with seeking expressions of interest from suitable contractors. Advertising for expressions of interest is underway.

More details on the procurement process can be found in the Council Report.

What’s happening now?

Detailed designs are now being finalised. These include consideration of traffic impact, landscaping design and environmentally sustainable initiatives which will enable Council to deliver the NARC 6 Star Green Star certified design.

Design and construction of NARC is currently out to tender with shortlisted construction contractors, in line with Council’s Procurement Policy.

In the meantime, it’s “business as usual”. We will be keeping the programs and services at NARC operational for the next few months until at least mid-September, in line with the end of the third school term. Rest assured, swimming lessons and group fitness classes will be on for a few months yet!

What’s happening next:

Following the tender assessment process Council anticipates awarding the construction contract by September 2021, with the redevelopment project commencing in late 2021.

We will have more information on the exact closure date once the contract is awarded and NARC users and members will be given as much notice of this as possible.

Once the contractor has been appointed for NARC’s construction, we will provide further updates. Subscribe (on the right) to stay-up-to-date with the latest information.

If you have any questions about the redevelopment of Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre, please contact Darebin Council on (03) 8470 8303 or email leisure@darebin.vic.gov.au.

If you would like to speak to someone in your preferred language, please contact us or call 8470 8470 to be connected to a Language Aide or an interpreter.

  • Detailed designs are being finalised.

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    After collecting your feedback, detailed designs are being finalised including consideration of traffic impact, landscaping design and environmentally sustainable initiatives which will enable Council to deliver the NARC 6 Star Green Star certified design.


    Further project updates will be provided to the community in late 2020.

  • We have collected your feedback!

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    Thanks to everyone who got involved and provided us feedback. We heard from the community through our online survey link, mail, emails, phone calls and virtual meetings.

    We have now collated the feedback and reported the key themes back to the community, as well as advised the Design Team which will help to inform future design developments for the new facility.

  • Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre - Feasibility Study

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    In late 2017 through to early 2018, Council sought feedback from NARC users and members, local residents, community groups and local schools who use the centre. The feedback received from this consultation contributed to a feasibility study.

    The feasibility study and community consultation found that NARC is a highly valued and utilised community asset, however it is not meeting the current needs of the community. While the facility has been upgraded over the years, as it was built in 1968, a new facility needs to be developed to cater for existing and future needs. This brings with it an opportunity to make significant improvements to the functionality and services offered at NARC.

    The feasibility study was considered by Council in September 2018, and in June 2019 Council awarded the contract for the design of the new facility to Warren and Mahoney Architects Australia.

    What’s next?

    As the project progresses, we look forward to providing updates for a community focused, welcoming and innovative NARC facility.