When a group of local residents formed the non profit group the Queens Community Aquatic Society (QCAS) to plan for a community pool for Queens County, they hoped to realize a longstanding “want” for the residents of the community. Discussions with the Region of Queens Municipality’s Council have been positive to date, with Council being receptive to the concept of an aquatics centre being added on site at Queens Place Emera Centre, in Liverpool, NS.
“An indoor pool has been approached many times over the years, and that desire has not been realized, sadly,” said Bill Smyth, a Director of QCAS. “An indoor pool can provide the community with year round social, recreational and therapeutic opportunities, through access to local swimming lessons, recreational swimming for all ages, competitive swimming opportunities for youth, and a warm pool for those requiring the therapeutic aspects of a pool. All ages and abilities in our community can enjoy and have the benefit of an indoor pool.”
The Council of the Region of Queens Municipality and QCAS have met several times to navigate the opportunity that QCAS is offering the Region. Discussions have been in agreement that the group of citizens is planning for a structure that will not burden taxpayers, as QCAS is planning to fund raise $5 million to cover the cost of construction of the facility. An endowment fund will be part of the fundraising, which will support pool operations for a long period of time. The location of the pool has been agreed upon, as during the construction phase of Queens Place Emera Centre, design and technical considerations were given to the possibility of a pool in the future. The design will be a four lane pool, with a warm therapy pool, and will be suitable for a variety of uses.
“Our Council is grateful to the citizens who have come together to form QCAS, and have put much time, effort and consideration into planning for a community pool. These volunteers are presenting an option for our community that would not otherwise be possible,” said Christopher Clarke, Mayor of the Region of Queens Municipality. “In the early stages of development, a pool was planned to be part of Queens Place Emera Centre, but it was excluded due to financial constraints. We are pleased that citizens have come forward and taken leadership in this important project. Our discussions to date have been very positive.”
The Region and QCAS continue to work closely developing a plan to bring a pool for the community to reality in the most cost effective manner.