If everything goes to plan, Karoonda residents could finally have a new swimming pool to use this summer.
The public pool at Karoonda Area School has sat empty and unusable since 2014 after it was declared unsafe and irreparable, but a $1.6 million investment by the school, state government and District Council of Karoonda East Murray meant a replacement could finally go ahead.
Work is underway on the new 25-metre pool plus amenities which will replace the old 17.5m pool.
A Department for Education and Child Development spokesperson said while there were some delays as a result of design adjustments and the need to address latent conditions, the project was expected to be completed by mid-January 2021.
"All structures including the pool, pavers and concrete have been demolished and the excavation for the new pool has been completed," the spokesperson said.
"All in-ground services like electrical, water and sewer services have been installed.
"The new change rooms, pool plant and above ground services are yet to be completed
"Other remaining site works include paving, stormwater and concrete concourse."
Member for Hammond Adrian Pederick was proud to have worked alongside the school's governing council, the district council, and the community to get the facility replaced.
"It's been an interesting journey, and I'm pleased we've got a resilient community and a strong community with regards to advocacy for the new pool," he said.
"It will be such a boon for the community - there's probably some people who never thought it would happen."
He said Karoonda having a pool was "absolutely necessary" to ensure residents' physical and mental wellbeing.
"I think it's an essential thing - water safety is vital for everyone, especially kids," he said.
"Families travel many kilometres to the river at Bowhill or Mannum, or Adelaide for the beach, or Murray Bridge for the pool."
Mayor Caroline Phillips was glad families would no longer have to travel long distances for swimming lessons.
"Karoonda has been without a pool for the past seven years, so this new facility is a huge win for our community," she said.
"As a parent myself, I know how important it is for our children to learn how to swim - it's absolutely an essential part of our children's education.
"We are so pleased that our local children have this opportunity and are no longer disadvantaged in having to travel such large distances to learn this important life skill."