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Lions Pool Closure

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Located at 245 Vansittart Ave., Lions Pool was an outdoor pool built in 1947 that offered recreational swimming, swimming lessons, and a highly successful swim team during July and August each year.

Lions Pool Closure

During the opening inspections of Lions Pool in 2023, staff discovered the liner was torn. Rather than just fixing the torn liner with no guarantee the aging pool could still open, Council directed staff to complete an assessment and cost estimate to complete all the renovations needed for Lions Pool to continue to meet the community's needs into the future.

Based on the information staff brought back to Council at the July 13, 2023, meeting, they decided to permanently close Lions Pool (which was already scheduled to close as early as 2025) and proceed with the development of a new outdoor pool at Cowan Fields (1495 Devonshire Ave.).

Council later overturned the decision to proceed with the new pool on March 21, 2024, removing the construction of the new outdoor pool from future capital budgets for a savings of approximately $5M less costs already incurred.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the issue at Lions Pool?

During the opening inspections of the pool in May 2023, staff discovered the liner was torn in several places. The liner would need to be replaced in order for the pool to hold water and complete the rest of the opening activities. Council directed staff to do further analysis of what other upgrades are needed rather than rushing to fix what might potentially be one of several issues.

Is Lions Pool closed permanently?

Yes. At their July 13 meeting, Council voted in favour of closing Lions Pool ahead of schedule. 

At the June 1 meeting, Council directed staff to investigate what renovations would be needed and what the cost would be to allow Lions Pool to continue to meet the community's needs into the future. Based on the information staff brought back, Council decided it was better to proceed with the development of the new outdoor pool that had already been included in the capital budget, rather than continue to invest in the aging Lions Pool. 

With Lions Pool not opening, where can families swim?

Southside Aquatic Centre offers public swims 7 days a week and adult and child swim on Tuesday and Thursday. Families can also cool off and have fun at our Spray and Play Wading Pool or at one of our two free splash pads. 

Can the liner be repaired?
Yes, it was possible to repair the liner, however there are limited number of contractors who offer municipal pool PVC liner repairs and replacement. Staff reached out to five contractors, four would not provide a quote and could not start work on this project until August, at the earliest. The fifth provided two quotes, one to repair the liner without a warranty, the second to replace the full liner with a 15-year warranty. 
Why is it so expensive to replace the liner?
Unlike the liner in most private pools, which are typically vinyl, a liner intended for municipal use is made of commercial grade PVC. Lions Pool is also approximately 10 to 15 times the size of a typical backyard pool. 
Why is the City not fixing the liner?
Given the overall state of the liner, staff suggested that replacing the full liner was the more appropriate approach if that was the direction Council wanted to go. The cost to replace the full liner came in at $226,915. However, there would still be a possibility that the pool could not open this season given the age and condition of the pipes, which can only be tested once the pool is filled.
How did the pool get to the point of being in such bad condition it can’t open?
Lions Pool is more than 75 years old and has undergone regular maintenance and upgrades as needed since then. As identified in the 2021 Recreation Facility Needs Study, Council approved in principle a plan to decommission Lions Pool and build a new outdoor pool facility (which is in the capital budget forecast for 2025). As a result, staff has been completing regular maintenance and undertaking minor upgrades as required to support the operation of Lions Pool until that time.
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© 2017 City of Woodstock P.O. Box 1539, 500 Dundas Street, Woodstock, ON N4S 0A7


Phone: 519-539-1291
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