Plans to demolish the old swimming pool at Fort Regent, as well as the upper cable car station, have been approved unanimously, yet reluctantly, by the Planning Committee with the Chairman describing the situation as a "very sorry state of affairs."
The estimated total cost of removing the swimming pool building is expected to be in the region of £3.5million, with nearly a third – approximately £1.275million – spent on asbestos removal.
As part of the application, the basement of the building will be kept and the pool filled up, levelled and tracked over. The aerial walkway between the swimming pool the main Fort Regent building will be removed, just like upper cable car station.
The planning officer in charge of the application recommended it for approval stating that the building had been closed down for a number of years and was falling into disrepair. She added that there were health and safety risks, including parts of the building falling down, and also the presence of asbestos.
Speaking in favour of the application, Steve Pallett, the Assistant Minister for Economic Development, Tourism, Sport and Culture, noted that two years ago, storms had caused parts of the building to blow away. He added that the staff at Fort Regent were worried about the state of the pool building and had been for "quite some time."
He also told the Planning Committee that there was "...no realistic use for these buildings moving forward."
Pictured: Jersey's skyline will change once the pool is gone. ((BDK Architects)
The Chairman of the committee, St. Mary's Constable Juliette Gallichan approved the application, saying it was a "very sorry state of affairs" adding "... the only thing to do is to take this action to move forward."
Philip Le Sueur, Trinity's Constable said that "there was no way back for these buildings," while Graham Truscott described them as "... a public liability way beyond saving." He however added that someone should have come forward with an alternative use for the building years ago.
Mr Pallett assured the committee that precautions will be taken during the demolition as it is "...absolutely vital that no one is put at risk" during the process.
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