Birmingham's first new council swimming pool for more than 20 years is set to open its doors to the public in the New Year.
Builders handed over Harborne Pool and Fitness Centre to the city council on Friday after a two-year construction programme.
The authority will spend the next two months fitting it out and training staff, then the first person is expected to be able to work out in the gym and swim in the pool in the first week of January.
The pool has come in £600,000 under budget – costing £12.2 million instead of the budgeted £12.8 million.
The centre houses a 25-metre main pool alongside a smaller learner facility, a gym, children’s fitness suite, dance and aerobics studio and a community room.
Harborne Baths closed in February last year as the previous construction was more than 60 years old and deemed too costly to repair.
The new venue will also be the first council leisure centre in the city to be run by a private company.
Six companies put in tenders for the contract to run the pool and the name of the successful bidder is due to be decided at a meeting of the city council’s cabinet later this month.
The pool will be run as a trust with all the existing staff retained on the same terms and conditions and the prices kept to the same level as other council-run leisure centres.
Steve Jarvis, senior Edgbaston constituency manager, said: “It’s under budget, on time and looks fantastic.
“We’re delighted and can’t wait to show it off to the public.
“The opening will coincide with the post-Christmas rush to get fit and lose weight, so the timing will be perfect.”
Mr Jarvis said contractors had managed to preserve the historic plaque which had been on the front of the old building and put it in pride of place in the new pool’s reception area.
While the pool has been closed, its fitness equipment was transferred to the Quinborne Centre.