A GRAND plan to build a state-of-the-art $67 million aquatic centre is likely dead in the water unless Tamworth Regional Council (TRC) decides to front up a significant amount of cash.
The project has proved difficult to get off the ground and mayor Col Murray said it may need to be broken into "bite-sized chunks".
"If we get the right mix and the right plan I think we will attract support from government but in my view we went out to the community and asked what they wanted in regards to an aquatic centre and we got exactly what we asked for, which was a grand plan that's completely unaffordable," he said.
"Personally I believe until or unless the council puts up a significant stake in this project it will be difficult to attract further funding, so I think there will need to be a funding strategy developed as to how we do fund that - we certainly don't have the budgets to draw those sort of numbers out of our annual budgets."
The council formally approved its Northern Inland Centre of Sporting Excellence masterplan on Tuesday night, that features the aquatic centre as a future project.
Cr Murray said there had been hurdles and stumbling blocks along the way, including a lack of financial support from the state and federal governments and budget constraints due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
"It will still be depressing, but I would doubt it would be something of a genuine international standard aquatic centre among the other quality facilities we see around Australia," he said.
He estimated the council would need to pitch-in a third of the cost.
Aquatic centre aside, Cr Murray said the masterplan had been a labour of love for him and he was excited to see whether Tamworth could play a supporting role in the Brisbane 2032 Olympics.
"I would be very surprised if we don't become a host of a number of different disciplines, things like equine, basketball, hockey, athletics, there's a strong case there with the quality of the facilities we have in place now and particularly by 2032 there will be more I would imagine."
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