1.They are still open! If you live or work closeby, or if you have any childhood memories of the pools visit them until January 1. At only $7 for an adult admission, both facilities are great deals. Inglewood Aquatic Centre has 6 lanes to swim in, a rope swing, a 2m slide, a water climbing wall and some small slides. The Beltline Recreation Centre has a gymnasium, outdoor climbing wall, fitness centre, pool and sauna. Both also offer fitness classes.
If you bought a pass that you were planning on using at these facilities and the closure date affects you, refunds are available.
2. If you were trying to pick recreation facilities to close that would have the least impact to the public, these would be them. Both the Inglewood Aquatic Centre and Beltline Recreation Centre are underutilized and have some of the lowest attendance of City of Calgary Recreation facilities. If you pick the right time, you can sometimes be the only person there.
3. While they may not be busy recreation facilities, their closure will still have an impact. The Inglewood Aquatic Centre is a neighborhood favorite and is also heavily used by a Special Olympics group and a synchronized swimming group. As most pools are booked up during prime hours, both groups will have to cut some of their programs or practice hours. During the winter the pool is also used for kayaking.
The Beltline gymnasium is booked by many community and work groups for basketball and floor hockey. Free After School programs were also held at both the Beltline and Inglewood facilities though they may have been moved regardless of the closure. Children’s swimming lessons are also very popular at both facilities.
There are many other fitness and recreation options in both areas. The City of Calgary Centres are by far the most cost friendly though and the closure will have a big impact on low income people in the area.
4. Both facilities have a long history. The Inglewood Pool opened in 1963 as an outdoor pool and the Beltline Recreation Centre opened in 1964. Inglewood was renovated shortly after it opened to become an indoor pool so it could be used year round. There has not been any renovations recently as it was previously scheduled for closure and was saved by the community. In contrast the Beltline Recreation Centre did a major renovation of their change rooms and gymnasium in 2018 and put in Calgary’s first outdoor climbing wall in 2016.
Because of their age, both facilities require a lot of upkeep and cost more than newer facilities would to run.
5. For those interested in saving the pools, there is some hope. The Inglewood community is once again rallying to save their pool. A petition is online with close to 2000 signatures to save both pools. A party is also planned at the Inglewood Pool on August 25.
The City of Calgary is also open to other providers taking over these locations and the preliminary report on this should be presented on September 30.
Councillor Gian Carlo Carra also expressed that a new pool for the area could be built, though with no plans for this yet, the timeline is pretty far off in the future. It also seems unlikely that it would be City operated.