Saturday, May 25, 2024

Wellington Shire turns sod on largest ever infrastructure project

Representatives from the Victorian Government, Wellington Shire Council, the John Leslie Foundation and community gathered yesterday to mark the start of construction of a $23 million redevelopment of Aqua Energy Leisure Centre. 

The official turning of the sod ceremony was held in Sale and signalled the start of work for the multi-million project, which is set to transform the centre into a contemporary community facility.

Due for completion in June 2025, the redeveloped facility will feature a state-of-the-art 25-metre pool and hall with a zero depth water play area, fully accessible single level pool deck for universal access, brand new change facilities, a Changing Places facility, new sauna, and a dedicated Learn to Swim office and coordination space.

Wellington Shire Council Mayor, Ian Bye said the project is the largest infrastructure project ever undertaken in the Shire’s history.

“This redevelopment is a significant undertaking and one that has been a priority for Council for several years. We look forward to delivering a fantastic new facility to support the whole community,” the Mayor said.

“In line with our Council Plan, health and wellbeing play a significant role in the economic and social fabric of our community. The new facility will not only encourage active participation, but it will also offer an inviting and accessible space for the community to come together and connect. 

“We ask for the community’s patience as we move through the various stages of construction and for regular users of Aqua, we encourage you to take advantage of our temporary pool facilities at West Sale and Sale Outdoor Pool.”

The $23 million project received $2 million from the Victorian Government’s Local Sports Infrastructure Fund, $10 million from the Community Sports Infrastructure Loan Scheme, $950,000 from the John Leslie Foundation, with the remainder of the project funded from Wellington Shire Council. Council is also intending to utilise funds from the Federal Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program.

For more information about the project, visit

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