Pop-up pool consultation, plans for 2017

popup pool

The Vancouver Park Board accepted a report to Expedite Outdoor Pools at the final meeting before the summer break on July 25, 2016. There is an ongoing public consultation process on the VanSplash Aquatics Strategy. An online survey will be open until September 15, 2016.

The City of Vancouver has a shortage of outdoor pools. There are only 3 outdoor pools to serve a population of over 605,000 residents (by comparison, Winnipeg has 10 outdoor pools while Mississauga has 7 outdoor pools). One of the options being investigated by Park Board is the construction of temporary ‘pop-up’ pools. A number of examples of pop-up pools are illustrated in the staff report. On May 30, 2016, Park Board Commissioners voted in favour of a motion to Expedite Outdoor Pools (6-1 vote with only Vision Vancouver Commissioner Catherine Evans opposed).

Part of the consultation process is to identify locations for a pop-up pool. The material on the Park Board webpage notes: “The pop-up pool would go in an area without easy access to a neighborhood outdoor pool or beach, and have room for up to 200 people.” The first pop-up pool could be in operation for the summer of 2017.

One thought on “Pop-up pool consultation, plans for 2017

  1. Wasting scarce resources on temporary pools before a true City-Wide plan for additional pools has been developed and voted on by the Public and prior to the whims of the next City of Vancouver budget consultation is money down the drain. There are alternatives.

    For the cost of a single pop-up pool the COV and VPB could re-purpose up to 6 existing/decommissioned neighbourhood wading pools as Fully Accessible splash/spray parks.

    As seasonal facilities they could simply be laid out in sections with all the components designed to fit into a recycled shipping container for off-season storage. It would take some in-house investigations to determine if the water supply and drainage are still functional and if the foundations are structurally sound but any repairs or up-grades could utilize existing COV/VPB staff skills.
    Many of the existing wading pools are in parks that have fieldhouses and community gardens. Water used in the spray park could be filtered, topped up as needed to compensate for evaporation and such and pumped back for re-use. The individual spray features should be designed to be both passive and active from above and below the play surface.
    At the end of the day the remaining water could be pumped into a storage tank for use in the gardens.
    While more analysis is necessary there are hundreds of post-secondary degrees at the COV and VPB so surely they must have the talent necessary to do virtually the entire project without hiring more outside consultants.

    Re-purposing wading pools as splash/spray parks would reduce vehicle use to destination pools/beaches and help re-invigorate many nbhd parks as community gathering areas for all at no additional cost to stressed out families. Splash/spray parks do not require life-guards. With at grade Access and non-slip surfaces potential injuries are limited. On the Eastside of Vancouver some nbhd parks are used for day-camps by local schools and for many this would give them another activity in their own nbhd to share with friends and Family.

    So what the COV and VPB should do is drop the pop-up pool plan altogether, identify which existing/decommissioned wading pools are suitable to be re-purposed as splash/spray parks and have some ready for next year.

    Why have 1 temporary small pool when you could have 6 new splash/spray parks for the same money?

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