The Vernon Aquatic Centre will be closed for its annual three-week maintenance period from Aug. 26 to Sept. 16. (City of Vernon - photo)

UPDATE: Pool re-opening delayed in Vernon, waterslide out of commission

Work took longer than expected, most of the centre will open Oct. 1 while lap pool opens Oct. 4

It will be a little longer before residents can make a splash at the pool and there will be no waterslide.

Greater Vernon Recreation Services regrets to announce the Vernon Aquatic Centre reopening has been delayed following the annual maintenance shutdown.

The centre was originally scheduled to reopen Monday, Sept. 26 but additional issues surfaced therefore the reopening is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 1 for most of the centre.

The leisure pool, hot tub, sauna and steam room will reopen Saturday, while the lap pool won’t be open until Oct. 4.

“Late last week we learned there were minor issues on the basin of the lap pool that needed to be addressed right away. The repairs were initiated as quickly as possible, but they unfortunately took longer to complete than anticipated,” said Doug Ross, recreation services director.

“Once the paint on the pool basin has cured properly, the pool will be refilled and the water will be brought up to the appropriate temperature. This process takes several days, which is causing the delay in opening the lap pool.

“While it’s unfortunate to delay the opening, this is a case of repairing a minor issue so it doesn’t become a bigger issue.”

The reopening of the aquatic centre is just in time for the first day of the new Lifesaving Society Swim for Life swim lessons.

A project to replace the upper platform of the waterslide was also scheduled to take place during shutdown, but it has been delayed.

After an initial inspection by an engineer, it was believed the replacement of the upper deck would allow the waterslide to be reopened. However, following a further inspection during the shutdown, the engineer identified additional issues and has now recommended the entire waterslide platform and stairs be repaired or replaced. Because of this, the waterslide will need to remain closed for an undetermined period of time.

Administration is in the process of looking at options for materials and how and when the work to repair or replace the platform and stairs may be carried out.

“We are disappointed we won’t be able to re-open the waterslide right now,” said Ross. “Unfortunately, this is an example of working to properly maintain aging infrastructure.”

Despite the unforeseen delay, a number of major projects were completed. Both the lap and leisure pool basins were sandblasted and sanded down to bare concrete and repainted. The sauna walls and benches were replaced with new cedar, and most areas of the changerooms were freshened up with new paint. All of the lockers were repaired and cleaned as required.

The other major project that was completed was the installation of new secondary UV disinfection systems for the leisure pool and hot tub. The new UV systems are replacing the old ozone disinfection system that had become problematic in recent years. Chlorine is still used as the primary disinfection method as required in the BC Public Health Act – Pool Regulations.

Recreation Services staff are now in the process of adjusting programming and notifying participants of the delayed reopening of the aquatic centre. We appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as this work is being completed to ensure the facility is ready to re-welcome participants for all aquatic programming.

The City of Vernon and Recreation Services apologize for the delayed reopening and the impact to participants.

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