Merton’s cabinet took the next step this week in making proposals for a new, affordable family-friendly leisure centre become a reality.
One of the first decisions for the new-look cabinet was the agreement of the main contractor to build the new family friendly leisure centre in Morden Park. The contractor chosen has committed to delivering a quality leisure centre at good value for money for Merton’s taxpayers, two key criteria for the cabinet in their decision.
The council will publicly announce the name of the contractor and formally award them the contract later this summer once the contract has been reviewed by the scrutiny committee.
This is the latest step towards starting work on the Morden Leisure Centre following a detailed public consultation in 2014, when residents and sports groups put forward their preferred facilities within the stipulated £10 million budget.
The new leisure centre will offer a 25 metre, six-lane main pool, a 15 metre x 13 metre pool with moveable floor to accommodate swimming teaching , water based exercise and diving, a 100 station fitness suite, a large studio / community room and a café.
The council has planned the construction of the new Morden Leisure Centre so that the current, ageing Morden Park Pool will only be demolished once the new leisure centre is up and running, so leisure customers will always have sports facilities throughout the works. Once the new centre is ready, the site of Morden Park Pool will be returned to open green space.
Building a new leisure centre will be better value for money to Merton’s taxpayers as it will cost the council less to maintain in the long-term than continuing to make expensive repairs to the current Morden Park Pools.
Cabinet member for community and culture Councillor Nick Draper said: “This is exciting news for Merton. Because of our sound financial planning and business-like approach, we have already budgeted for a new family-friendly leisure centre that will benefit residents, providing them with great sports facilities fit for the 21st century. So even in these financially challenging times, we can deliver new facilities for people living and working in our great borough: and we will do so within budget and on time.”