British Columbia

Vancouver Park Board staff float big ideas in draft pool strategy

Along with some fairly dry ideas, a draft plan prepared by Park Board staff has some interesting concepts for the future of recreational swimming in Vancouver.

A floating pool in False Creek? The Fraser River as a natural swimming pool?

Could False Creek become home to a floating swimming pool? Park Board staff believe it's possible. (City of Vancouver)

Vancouver Park Board staff have some big ideas for the future of pools in the city — but some might seem like they're a little off the deep end.

Along with upgrades and repairs to existing facilities, the draft VanSpash Aquatic Strategy — which was on the park board's agenda for their Monday meeting — raises more ambitious ideas like a floating pool in False Creek.

"People love their pools and beaches here in Vancouver, but they're really looking for more diversity and more fun in their aquatic experiences," Dave Hutch, the board's manager of planning research, told On The Coast guest host Gloria Macarenko.

"The [False Creek] floating pool is a big idea. It's one that will take something to achieve, but it's the idea of perhaps getting to be able to have a swimming experience in False Creek while we're still dealing with water quality issues."

Another idea is a "natural pool" in the Fraser River.

That idea, Hutch says, was proposed to give people in the south of the city a "destination" beach like those in the north who have Second Beach, Kits Beach and English Bay.

The "natural" aspect of the pool comes from the water being treated by plants, not chemicals.

Other ideas include hot tubs added to pools, more spray parks, and rehabilitation of older indoor pools.

The Park Board is scheduled to develop a final pool strategy in the fall.

With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast