The pool at Gyro Park, a popular spot for children and families, will not be opening this summer.
Preceding an unexpected July 7 announcement from the BC Centre for Disease Control that pools may now operate at normal capacity, the city announced on July 6 that it would not have time or staff to get the pool up and running with the existing public health restrictions, which included scheduling swimmers’ visits.
Nelson’s chief financial officer Colin McClure says the city expected that, in accordance with public health guidelines, it would have to create a booking system to limit the numbers of the people in the pool and hire staff to administer it. It would take time and staff to create such a system, he said.
In its July 6 written announcement that the pool would not be opening, the city stated, “If there were a sudden change to the public health orders related to bookings, it is important to understand that hiring, training and scheduling staff for the pool is a significant undertaking and that preparations for the pool itself can take up to four weeks. We cannot open the pool overnight, and given the short two-month season, it is just not feasible for this year.”
Another issue is lifeguards.
The pool is run by the City of Nelson but the lifeguards are provided by the Regional District of Central Kootenay. But the RDCK has told the city it cannot supply lifeguards this summer because of staff shortages, according to McClure.
The city’s announcement reminds families that both Lakeside Park beach and the spray park at Lions Park are open for the summer, with extended spray park hours of 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.