1. It may be the same cost as a 25m pool
The land developer that is developing the existing pool site will bear a significant amount of the capital cost of the new Harry Jerome Rec Centre. As to operating costs, the North Shore Aquatics Society (NSAS) has done extensive research, comparing 25m and 50m pools across Canada, including 10-lane 25m pools like the one previously proposed for Harry Jerome. It has calculated that the cost of running the pool is likely to be similar, regardless of size, but the maximum difference between a 25m and 50m pool could be $400,000 per year, which is less than $3 per North Van resident, per year – less than the price of one admission.
2. It’ll be used by the whole community
50m pools are actually a much more versatile and inclusive community resource than 25m facilities. “With a 25m pool, you’re usually confined to one or perhaps two activities at a time,” explains NSAS member Mike Dowling. “That means if lessons or activities like aquacise are taking place, members of the public have very limited use of the pool. 50m pools can be divided into two or three areas, so you’ll never be turned away, even if events are taking place.”
3. It’ll increase sport opportunities for young people
25m pools aren’t adequate for training, events, or activities like diving, synchronized swimming, water polo and underwater hockey. “We have been constrained from offering diving opportunities to children in our area because of a lack of adequate facilities,” says Joe Garcia, a director of the North Shore Dolphins Dive Club Society. “With a 50-metre pool, a portion can be allocated to diving during certain times while others use the rest of the pool, which means more children can get involved in this exciting sport.”
4. It could be a revenue generator
Limited aquatic events can be held in a 25m pool, which means there are fewer sponsorship opportunities. “Other communities are selling naming rights for their 50m pools, the front-desk area and so on,” says NSAS member Bruce Tout. “We’ve worked out that this could raise up to $400,000 a year.” Then there are the revenue generating opportunities for local businesses, since aquatics events often take place over several days.
5. It can easily be configured to different lengths depending on program needs
If you have visions of ploughing up and down a pool that’s twice the size of your usual one, relax. A 50m pool will usually be divided into two 25m lengths.
Want to know more facts about the pool-building project? Visit northshoreaquatics.ca.