The long-awaited Ceduna swimming enclosure is close to becoming a reality with work on the structure commencing last week.
The creation of the swimming enclosure has been more than a decade in the making and after undergoing various design and location changes it is set to be open this summer.
Ceduna District Council manager of operations Grant Drummond said this had been a long time coming.
“It has been a hell of a process,” he said.
“Council has changed sites and changed designs, and to now see it being built is fantastic.”
Mr Drummond said the design included a walkway alongside the jetty which will bring people on to a platform and then a gangway that goes down towards the water.
He said there would be a pontoon with steps to access the water, while the design would allow for people of all mobility to access the site.
Davey Hydraulics has been contracted by the council to drive in the piles and fix the enclosure’s metalwork in place, before the net is then installed.
“There is another few weeks for the current work, then a separate contractor will fit the net in late September,” Mr Drummond said.
“That will take about a week to complete – weather-dependent – but as soon as the net is in place it will be ready to go and open to the community.”
Ken McCarthy has been part of the swimming enclosure committee for a number of years and said it was a “relief” to see work underway.
He said they hoped it would get plenty of use this summer and beyond.
“We hope it will be used, you look at others that have been around for a long time in Port Lincoln and Streaky Bay and they have been popular,” he said.
“Hopefully it attracts tourists, they may stay in town a bit longer to go for a swim.
“This makes use of the jetty, is not too invasive and from an environmental point of view it is good as it cleans itself.”
Fellow committee member Melva Blumson said the news was “exciting”.
“I’m very happy to finally see it happening, this is going to be good for the town,” she said.
“There’s a good chance it will attract tourists and it will get people in the water.”
Mr McCarthy thanked everybody for their support in helping the structure see the light of day.
“Thanks to the council and the committee, and to all those who raised money, while Mark Comas must be commended for his work in getting significant donations from Iluka, Kalari, Ceduna Foreshore Hotel, Aboriginal Lands Trust and more.”
Mr Drummond said all funds raised by the community and donations made by organisations over the years had been used for the project.