No diving boards, no parking, no problem: The reviews are in on the new downtown pool
plus if you aren't a teacher, the school district wants you
Happy Monday. We’re hitting the sweet spot for winter weather this week, never getting above zero, never dropping below -20 C, and lots of sun. Enjoy it.
In today’s issue, I’ll see what people are saying about the new pool after it opened to the public over the weekend. Read to the end for a good meme about crows. But first, the news:
Remembering Roger Adolph, residential school survivor, boxer and activist.
Over 1,000 people turned out for Remembrance Day ceremonies on Friday.
117 Ukrainian refugees have settled in Prince George.
The Prince George teacher shortage has hit the point where the district is advertising for adults without teacher training to look after classrooms.
Feature: Get an intimate look at the work done at the Northern Lights Wildlife Shelter in Smithers, B.C.’s only grizzly bear refuge and the spot where pretty much any orphaned bear cup from Prince George winds up.
Bone of Crows, starring Prince George-raised actor Grace Dove, is screening at the House of Ancestors this week.
Winter sports: Early season cross-country skiing is underway out at Otway while the outdoor ice oval is still planning to open this week. Not seeing any sign of activity from Purden or Tabor Mountain, but Powder King says they are looking at possibly opening this weekend.
wake up babe, the new pool just dropped
Over the weekend, people who pre-registered for swim times got to try out the new downtown Canfor Leisure Pool. A brief history lesson: In October 2017, residents were asked to vote on whether they would support borrowing up to $35 million to build a new downtown pool to replace the Four Seasons Leisure, which had been in place since 1970 and, according to the city, was getting too old to maintain on a reasonable budget. 4,923 people (62.48 per cent of all who turned out) voted in favour, while 2,956 (37.52 per cent) voted against it. Most people stayed home.
The building went about $3 million overbudget and a couple months over the projected construction time but in the end, people want to swim. So was it all worth it?
In the Prince George Citizen, Arthur Williams says it’s a resounding yes, writing “Overall, the new facility is an addition which will add value to the city’s recreational options for decades to come.”
But he, and others, note hiccups and problems, so let’s take a look at what’s good and what’s not-so-good about the newest civic facility to be added to our fair city.
By all accounts, this is one of the more accessible leisure facilities to be built here, and was a key part of the construction process. Williams writes, “Each pool has a wheelchair lift, and stairs with handrails leading into them. The recreational pool also has a beach-style access, which leads the splash zone and lazy river.”
Bad: Public parking.
I have seen several complaints about the lack of parking near the pool. Part of this is the fact that a new condo unit is being built right across from it, plus the old pool parking lot nearby is still a demolition zone, so presumably this will change, but still: For better or worse, this is not a city where people are accustomed to the idea of having to walk more than a few meters from their car to their destination so expect this to be a sticking point for a while.
Good: Kid’s activities.
Everyone seems pretty happy with the splash zone, ninja course, lazy river and waterslides. Overall, it seems pretty family friendly.
Bad: No diving boards.
I mean, I get that this is meant to be a recreational pool rather than a training one but… really? I’m curious what the budgetary consideration was here.
Good: A huge hot tub. No more crowding in alongside everyone else.
Bad: Crowded changerooms, lack of places to stash towels, no food options.
So yeah! That’s what folks are saying. And that’s today’s newsletter except for that crow meme I promised, just after the subscribe button.
I vaguely remember when the city released the design that the No diving boards was because they couldn’t reasonably make a pool deep enough for a diving tank. Maybe something about the water table? It’s why four seasons was built up on a hill.