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Aquatic centre reopens with COVID-19 safety measures in place

Pull out your swimsuit, the Powell River Recreation Complex pool is open again.

Since it closed in March, there have been a few changes to the aquatic centre, both aesthetically and mechanically.

“The reopening of our aquatic centre has been long anticipated,” said the city’s recreation manager, Neil Pukesh. 

“Prior to the closure due to the pandemic we discovered some mechanical and engineering issues that had to be dealt with, so we took this time as an opportunity to resolve them to ensure that they met updated health regulation requirements.”

The re-opening includes several enhanced safety and cleaning protocols such as reduced maximum capacities on swims and buffers between swim periods. 

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All swim sessions such as lap lanes, leisure swim, family, and all welcome swims will be registered up to one week in advance via online, in person or by phone. 

Those with active memberships will need to register by phone. 

Registration is now open, and all sessions are viewable on Parks, Recreation and Culture website.

“The way we will be operating will be quite different from what everyone has been used to as a result of new COVID protocols,” said aquatic program supervisor Tami Wood. 

“Entry will be through the main viewing doors and we’re asking participants to arrive ‘swim-ready’, which is a bathing suit under clothes. People should also limit the number of personal items being brought into the facility as a locker and dressing room use will be very limited.”

Other changes to the aquatic centre operations include the creation of double wide swim lanes that can accommodate up to four persons in each lane, a one-hour time limit on all lane and leisure swims, a mandatory cleansing shower prior to swimming, and capacity limits of 36 people per swim. 

The sauna will remain closed until further notice.

“This has been a long time coming and we’re excited to see many of our regular users back in the pool as many have told us how much they’ve missed it and the health benefits that it provides,” said Pukesh. 

“Right now, we’re taking a phased approach to the operations and will

be adding more programming, such as group, private, and children’s swim lessons in the new year.”

For more information on schedules, programs and registrations please visit either www.powellriverprc.ca, the Parks, Recreation & Culture Facebook page, or call (604) 485-2891.

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