News / Vancouver

Temporary urban beaches and 'natural pool' recommended for Vancouver

A Park Board staff report also suggests at least one new indoor pool, one new outdoor pool, and several upgrades to some existing facilities.

A Park Board report is floating the idea of a 'natural pool' like this one, built in South Vancouver along the Fraser River.

Courtesy City of Vancouver

A Park Board report is floating the idea of a 'natural pool' like this one, built in South Vancouver along the Fraser River.

A new swimming-pool strategy from the Vancouver Park Board includes novel ideas like temporary urban beaches and a ‘natural pool’ along the Fraser River, as well as renovations for existing indoor facilities.

The report, which park board commissioners are set to discuss Monday, marks three indoor pools for upgrades – the aging Vancouver Aquatic Centre, as well as the Kerrisdale and Britannia pools. Templeton Pool would be demolished, with patrons using the new, larger Britannia pool instead. The report also recommends demolishing the pool at Lord Byng and build a new sports-oriented pool at nearby Connaught Park.

These improvements to indoor swimming pools would provide about five swims per person all-year-round, even with projected population growth by 2041, according to the report.

Other recommendations include a new outdoor leisure pool at Killarney Community Centre and a new spray park at Britannia Community Centre. Those new facilities, along with a natural pool (which uses plants and biological filters to treat the water) along the Fraser River, would fill service gaps in South Vancouver neighbourhoods.

The park board has already put aside $200,000 for the planning and design of a new outdoor pool, according to the report.

The Copenhagen Harbour Bath is an example of the harbour deck concept that the report recommends the city look at.

Courtesy City of Vancouver

The Copenhagen Harbour Bath is an example of the harbour deck concept that the report recommends the city look at.

The report also suggests looking at a ‘harbour deck’ as a possible addition to existing outdoor swimming locations. Harbour decks, a combination of a pool and pier and waterpark (which can be found in Copenhagen and Oslo), are permanent platforms and ramps built in natural bodies of water.

Staff also recommend testing the feasibility of a floating pool in False Creek.  

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