• Design Details: Auto Garage Salvaged as Swim School

    by Paul Steinbach April 2014

    Adaptive reuse is viewed as a key factor in the rejuvenation of historic or older structures and land. But there's another "green" aspect of the process that makes adaptive reuse resonate even more with facility owners: It can save money. Case in point is Splash Swim School in Walnut Creek, Calif., which was constructed for a cool $1 million.

  • After 133 Closures in 2013, City Steps Up Pool Testing

    by April 2014

    When many people go to the local pool for a swim, they don’t think twice about the delicate chemical balance required for the water to be safe for swimmers — they assume there are people responsible for checking that — and they’d be right. 

    But according to the Lincoln, Neb., Journal Star, city inspectors worry those tasked with checking the pool's chlorine and pH levels may not be doing so correctly.

    In 2013, Lincoln closed 133 pools after inspections revealed that the water did not meet quality standards — which may indicate that water testers are making errors during testing.

    Under current regulations, lifeguards at a pool can handle pool tests with little training in the correct testing processes.

    Pool water is tested by adding a chemical to a small sample of pool water and stirring the sample to turn the water pink. Then another chemical is added to return the water to its original color.

    “It’s like a chemistry test,” Scott Holmes, Environmental Public Health Division manager for the local department, told the Journal Star. “You have to add the correct number of drops. You have to swirl and not shake.”

    Under proposed changes to the outdated pool-testing rules, only certified pool operators or pool testers would be allowed to do quality checks. In order to become certified, candidates would be required to take a short class and be tested to make sure they know how to test the water. The certification class would cost $20 dollars and would make a tester certified for two years.

    Testing water correctly plays a large role in helping maintain healthy pool users. When the water has the right pH and chlorine balance, it can reduce the transfer of certain types of diseases and infections.

    In 2001, Lincoln suffered an outbreak of cryptosporidium, a diarrheal illness, after it is estimated that it originally spread through public swimming pools. At its peak, there were more than 133 cases of cryptosporidium that had been acquired through public swimming pools. 

  • Dehumidifiers Help Maintain Air Quality in Natatoriums

    by Eric Herman April 2014

    Anyone who has spent time around indoor pool facilities can likely relate to the challenge of maintaining desired air quality within those spaces. All too often, the humidity is too high, the air smells bad and the temperatures are either too high or too low. In some extreme cases, the air quality is so degraded it can present health hazards and/or create conditions that keep people away.

  • Peeing in Public Pools Common and Harmful, Say Studies

    by Michael Gaio March 2014

    It might not come as a huge shock, but now there's actually proof to back it up: peeing in the pool is harmful to swimmers' health. And that's bad news considering the Los Angeles Times reports one in five Americans admits to peeing in a public swimming pool.

  • A Combination of Technologies Optimizes Pool Water Treatment

    by Steve Kenny January 2014

    Perfectly polished water contained in a public or commercial swimming pool can be wonderfully inviting. It's ultimately the reason pools and spas exist; humans feel good in clean water. Unfortunately, water that's left insufficiently treated can have the opposite effect. My many years as a swimming pool service/water chemistry professional has led me to firmly believe that water treatment in many aquatic facilities is not only badly antiquated, but far too often potentially harmful.

  • New Projects: Nippert Stadium | Agoura Hills Rec | Almont Park

    by Emily Attwood December 2013

    Breaking Ground

    A renovation and expansion of the University of Cincinnati's Nippert Stadium (above) kicks off this month. The $86 million privately funded project will increase the stadium's capacity from 35,000 to 40,000 and include a new press box, suites and club seats. Renovations to the west concourse will include updates to the concessions stands and restrooms. Heery International, based in Atlanta, is lead architect on the project, which is expected to wrap up in August 2015.

  • 2013 Facilities of Merit: Regent Park Aquatic Centre

    by AB Editors October 2013

    From its "dorsal fin" roof feature to its ground-level window walls, Regent Park Aquatic Centre represents a sculptural park pavilion presence befitting its location within a rigorous urban grid.

  • Aquatic Facility Provides New Opportunities for Small Town

    by Greg Cannon September 2013

    In a community-wide effort to provide the benefits of a swimming and aquatic competition venue for local residents, the city of Polson, Mont., located 50 miles north of Missoula, recently opened its newly completed Mission Valley Aquatics Center.

  • LED Pool Lighting Has Fast Become the Industry Standard

    by Paul Steinbach June 2013

    Steve Crocker chuckles at the recollection. While doing a final walkthrough of a college aquatics facility on which his consulting firm, Counsilman-Hunsaker, had worked - its first project involving color-changing LED light fixtures - Crocker struck up a conversation with a lifeguard.

  • Fort Bliss Raises Standard With New Aquatic Center

    by Christopher Prawdzik May 2013

    Building a state-of-the art aquatic facility doesn't happen overnight. Just ask officials at Fort Bliss. It took seven years, $15.5 million, and overcoming several challenges to get theirs just right.