Denis Pontin

Founder of RMP & Associates

Denis Pontin

Leisure Facilities Planning & Management Consultant

Time in the Industry: 35 years

Time with company: 30 years


Master of Education (Leisure)

Bachelor of Physical Education

Graduate Venue Management Association

Life Member Parks and Leisure Australia


Denis Pontin brings a background in business development, project management, fitness, aquatic design and management to your project.  He has worked extensively throughout Australia as a consultant to local government, undertaking community consultation, feasibility studies and market research.  Denis is highly respected in the industry for his asset management and business planning skills. These have been applied to projects that include aquatic, indoor sport, community recreation centres and health club developments for councils, clubs and the private sector.  He is also involved in project management as Chair of Property and Development for a large private school.  

Business Case reviews have been undertaken 

  •  Northern Beaches Council (review of Business case and feasibility for Warringah Aquatic centre)
  •  Bateman’s Bay Aquatic and Performing Arts Centre (review of Business Case and Feasibility as part of the NBRS team)
  •  Port Hedland Council review of the YMCA Business Case and management of Port Hedland and South Hedland Aquatic Centres
  •  Hornsby Shire Council review of Council’s Business Case and preparation of internal bid for the operation of the new Hornsby Aquatic Centre
  •  Commissioned to review the Business Case and develop a new Business Case for additional features to be added to Aquatopia (Fairfield City Council)

Denis has undertaken various aquatic centre projects incorporating the development of Business Cases including:

  • Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre:  developed a Business Case incorporating community consultation and a design brief to meet Council’s capital budget and operational outcomes
  • Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre – prepared a Business Plan and Marketing Plan and undertook a staff review f key positions relating to the operation of the Fitness centre and Learn-to-Swim operations
  • Cumberland City Council – prepared a Business Case for Wentworthville Aquatic Centre and a design brief to inform stakeholders and gain community support for a new Aquatic Centre on the existing site (under construction)
  • Developed a Business Case to evaluate proposed upgrades to the Narrandera Aquatic Centre (Lake Talbot) and Tumut Aquatic Centre (Snowy Valleys Council) 
  • Developed a new Business Case for Mid-Western Regional Council to test the viability of three options for the redevelopment of the Mudgee Memorial Pool
  • Developed a new Business Case for Griffith Council to support the redevelopment of the Griffith Aquatic and Fitness centre
  • Developed a Business Case and design brief to deliver a commercially sustainable outcome for three community pools in Brisbane (Colmslie, Mt Gravatt and Runcorn) and secure Operators.  
  • Developed a Business Case to support the change in management of the Hurstville Aquatic and Leisure centre and subsequently reviewed the Operator’s Business Case at intervals in the contract.  The initial consultancy included developing a Management Agreement between the successful Operator and Hurstville Council that provides Council with a commercial rent.


Denis is highly respected in the industry for his business planning skills. These have been applied to projects that include Hydrotherapy pools, indoor aquatic and sport centres, community centres, libraries, museums, open space planning and health club developments for councils, clubs, universities and the private sector. 

Denis was commissioned as the aquatic consultant to develop the Ryde Aquatic Centre and City of Sydney pools at Cook and Philip Park, Andrew Boy Charlton and Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre Ultimo.

Denis was retained by the Project Managers (Colony6) as the aquatic Consultant to the Australian National University developing a brief and providing advice on management and operation for two indoor pools and a fitness centre opened at the end of 2018

Denis has undertaken consultancies recently with Mid-Western Regional Council (Mudgee Memorial Pool) and Mid Coast Council to test the feasibility of an indoor pool at Tea Gardens.

He is currently the Aquatic Consultant the Sydney Grammar School’s proposed new indoor pool as well as Aquatic Consultant to St Joseph’s College for their new aquatic and fitness centre.  

Currently Denis is advising Bayside Council on the development of sports facilities and the management of the new Arncliffe Youth and Sports centre

Denis provides independent advice to all clients. Denis works closely with aquatic engineers and architects to ensure the Business Case is consistent with the design and operation of the Aquatic Centre and its supporting facilities.

Denis has written many articles in leisure and recreation journals.  In 2015 he was appointed as specialist leisure consultant by the UAE Ministry for Sport and Recreation to review all the Cultural and Leisure Centres in the UAE.  He was then appointed to develop a Strategy for encouraging Sports Participation in the UAE. His special area of interest is integrated planning of viable community facilities.  

Project experience includes the following:

  • Aquatic and Fitness Consultant ANU campus redevelopment new indoor pools and fitness centre. 2017/18
  • Aquatic Consultant to Rockdale Council on the management and operation of the new Bexley Pool 
  • Aquatic planning consultancies with Narrandera and Snowy Valleys Councils.  Master Plan development for aquatic and sports centres, feasibility and site evaluation 2015-2018
  • Planning, feasibility, design and business case for the redevelopment of Ruth Everuss Aquatic centre 2014-2016 
  • Operations evaluation, Business Plan and Marketing Plan for Leichhardt Park Aquatic centre 2016
  • Aquatic Planning Consultant, 2006-2010, Brisbane City Council identifying sites and potential Operators for three new community aquatic centres.  Design brief development, strategic asset management of pools and community facilities and development of management contracts  
  • Master Plan of the redevelopment of Emerton Aquatic and Leisure Centre for Blacktown City Council and peer review of the redevelopment Blacktown Aquatic.
  • Project Management Consultant, 2004-2008, development of successful pools and health clubs for Campbelltown Catholic Club, Easts Leagues Club and Schools, Universities and Union Club.
  • Leisure Management Consultant, 1999-2000 and 2006-2007, 2017 City of Sydney aquatic centres (ABC Pool, C&PP, Victoria Park and Ian Thorpe).  Contract Manager C&PP Contract development stakeholder negotiations, management plans and operations and design development.



  • Extensive experience in planning and management of community aquatic and sports facilities. 
  • Detailed knowledge of government, school, club and university asset management and strategic planning in relation sport and recreation facilities
  • Successful projects for private sector and government clients integrating community, not-for-profit and commercial facilities.
  • Extensive contract management experience and stakeholder engagement.
  • Extensive design development and project management experience.
  • Acknowledged expert in leisure, management and planning in Australia.

Denis provides his experience as an Aquatic Consultant to the team and the Council to understand the needs of the variety of users, identify the perceived limitations and “gaps” in provision, and develop solutions that enable sustainable outcomes to be achieved. 

Denis has been a member of the Australian Council for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled (ACROD) advising on best practice in meeting the aquatic needs of those with handicaps and mobility issues.

Denis Pontin has provided his expertise to Councils in every State and Territory in Australia to develop affordable, successful and sustainable aquatic, fitness and sports facilities. 

Denis is a Life Member of Parks and Leisure Australia and has spoken at many PLA Conferences over the last two decades.


  • Design of aquatic and sports centres and playing surfaces and amenities to minimise water use, reduce maintenance costs and harness energy is essential.
  • Design of facilities to reduce energy and integrate recycled materials wherever possible.
  • Design solutions to optimise playing surface use with floor, acoustic and layout solutions improving operational outcomes.
  • Designing facilities that optimize shared infrastructure where possible and integrate with other activities, including spectator needs and services is essential.
  • A design that allows multiple groups and individuals to use the pools and facilities at the same time recognizing the different needs of users in temperature, change room and car parking/access requirements
  • Denis has a wide knowledge of sports and fitness equipment and pool plant and equipment and the way different construction materials have performed in various centre.  This extends to concourse finishes, pool finishes and the fit-out of change rooms, fitness centres and the design of pools for optimal flexibility.


Established in 1982 by Denis Pontin, RMP & Associates Pty Ltd is a specialist Leisure Management and Planning Consultancy with offices at Palm Beach and Turramurra NSW Australia

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