Maple Ridge’s new outdoor pool could be located at Hammond Community Centre, Volker Park on 123rd Avenue, Jackson Farm, up in Silver Valley or down Lougheed Highway, on 232nd Street, near the present site of the lawn bowling club.
Council was to look at all the options Monday at a special meeting on the topic.
Politicians earlier rejected an outdoor pool, then later reconsidered it and told staff to come with some possible locations for a 25-metre outdoor pool to provide space for swimming clubs that will have nowhere to train when the Maple Ridge Leisure Centre closes in December, for a year of renos.
A staff report tries to list the pros and cons of each location and the quickest way to get a pool built. But even sole-sourcing the actual purchase of a modular outdoor pool from one supplier, instead of going to bids, could still take several months because those would still have to be held for electrical, mechanical and architectural work.
It also notes any location chosen would require consultation with area residents.
The quickest way to build a pool, say staff, is to prepare a request for bids for a design-build contract with a particular completion date.
It also warns that building a modular pool above grade means that it would have a uniform depth of two metres for the entire 25 metre-length of the pool, which would be good for competitive swimmers, but which wouldn’t suit beginners.
Building in-ground would allow a graduated depth so that recreational and beginner swimmers could use it.
Some points about the possible sites:
• Hammond Stadium site could contain up to 170 parking stalls (at the expense of the sport court and playground), as well as a 10-lane, 25-metre outdoor pool;
• Volker Park would require relocation of the playground, which nearby residents may or may not like;
• Jackson Farm is a large site, with 36 acres, intended to be used as a park, although an outdoor pool would use only a small portion of that;
• Blaney Hamlet Neighbourhood Park site (Silver Valley) has enough room for a 10-lane pool, but neighbours haven’t been consulted;
• Thomas Haney lawnbowling-tennis site on 232nd Street has two possible sites for an outdoor pool, although one was requested for use as a future tennis clubhouse and two more tennis courts.
The estimated cost to build an outdoor pool was $6 million, excluding land.
Coun. Gordy Robson would like to get a pool running by fall to provide space for competitive swimmers shut out of the Leisure Centre pool during the year-long renovation.
“This came from the swimming people in our community. I think it’s a good one. I think we should get it in the ground and get our kids swimming.”
He’d support an indoor pool providing the city partner with YMCA to build and operate a new indoor pool. He said the YMCA would pay half the capital costs and share in operating costs. “We spend a million a year on our current pool.”