City planning to make $2 million in upgrades
The Riverside Swimming Pool has always been synonymous with seasonal relaxation and rejuvenating oasis. Whether visitors are lounging on their beach towel, tuning their radio dial or beating the summer sun in the 3,750 square feet of cool water, the outdoor pool is a welcoming amenity accessible to anyone seeking respite from the busy work week.
But the 23-year-old old swimming pool located at 4498 NW High Drive needs improvements and city officials are getting the ball rolling on its restoration.
Currently, the City of Riverside is conducting a planning study to develop options for upgrading the pool and aquatic features, says Noel Bennion, capital project and parks manager.
“We have done an analysis of the existing pool condition and we are working on gathering more data with our consultant, Waters Edge Aquatic Design, to identify possible improvements or upgrade options,” said Bennion.
Currently, the project is in the preliminary planning stage, which involves hosting a public meeting, soliciting community feedback, and conducting online citizen surveys. To ensure the pool and pool-related features are shining for generations to come, everyone is encouraged to provide their input and help influence the decision-making process. Citizens have until mid- January to complete the survey online and help city officials decide what features the pool may feature.
The existing swimming pool features a zero-depth entry, a one-meter diving board, and deck seating.
“The pool is popular, but the space and features struggle to meet the demand,” said Bennion. “Additionally, the pool facility is aging and in need of improvements to maximize visitor comfort and experience for years to come.”
City leaders are proposing several additional features, including expanding the pool’s shallow and deep-water areas, expanding the entry area and concessions, adding shade structures, and adding a splash ground.
In some ways, the zero-depth splash ground would have added benefits, like being accessible for a longer period of the day and accessible for a longer seasonal period.
“The spray ground area is unique to the project and is expected to include spray features for toddlers and older children. It is also a point of interest that the spray ground could be accessible when the pool is open, but also accessible when the pool is closed. This is made possible by adding fencing and gates,” says Bennion.
“When the pool is open, the gates are open to the pool and access is only granted through the pool area; when the pool is closed, gates to the pool are closed off and access is granted through outside gates. The fencing and gating system allows for safe operation both during and outside of pool operating hours.”
There are certainly many spray ground features to consider, including cannons, short sprays, boulder sprays, turf mounds, deck bubbles, streams, interactive water tables, and dumping buckets.
Over the past few weeks, Waters Edge Aquatic Design has been preparing two separate design layouts for city officials to consider. In addition to the splash ground, the two concepts feature enhanced landscaping, dry playground equipment, and restroom improvements.
The cost to upgrade the pool and build the proposed aquatic features will run upwards of $2 million. City officials plan to fund the improvements through the Riverside Capital Improvement Fund, and grants, like a Platte County Partnership Grant.
If all goes as planned the pool renovations will be complete by the spring of 2023.
“We are excited about the project and hopeful to get a lot of good feedback in the coming weeks,” said Bennion.