Wascana Pool set to reopen in 2023 with a wheelchair-accessible slide, tactile map

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Wascana Pool set to reopen in 2023 with a wheelchair-accessible slide, tactile map
Residents can expect to enjoy amenities like a lazy river, waterslides, beach-entry pool, a lap pool, diving tank, a hot tub, a concession that serves both pool and park users – Jul 9, 2022

Wascana Pool construction is on track to open in 2023. The city provided an update Friday on the $16.5 million Wascana Pool Renewal Project.

Construction began in summer 2021 and is set to be completed for the 2023 season.

When the new pool opens, residents can expect to enjoy amenities such as a lazy river, waterslides, a beach-entry leisure pool, a lap pool and diving tank, a hot tub and a concession that serves both pool and park users.

New Wascana Pool under construction. Troy Charles

According to the news release all the structural work is complete with foundations, pool tanks and buildings. The remaining work will go on through the summer and focus on the completion of the waterslide tower, finishing and fixtures.

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“We wanted more than just a status quo, a focus at council is accessibility — we’ve taken that to the top level. We can now have individuals in a wheelchair swimming, not just watching. It creates a dynamic opportunity to meet the needs of everyone,” councillor Lori Bresciani said.

One of the facilities is a tactile map, as the facility has lots of shapes and curves and it’s not built in a straight line.

“A 3D tactile map at front of entrance for people with visual impairments to understand where all the amenities are, without a guide or anything, once they have that understanding they can move into the site as they need,” Eric de Wall, facilities project consultant with the City of Regina, said.

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The new Wascana Pool will also have a wheelchair-accessible slide.

“You can imagine if there is a child who is in a wheelchair, they can’t ride a slide. By building a slide with a ramp, they can get up there. To transfer them into the slide we have a raised platform with a gate, transfer out of the chair and into the slide,” de Wall said.

There will be a wheel-chair accessible water slide at the new Wascana Pool. Troy Charles

During the construction, there were some hurdles along the way like moving around the site to avoid trees while digging.

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“The spray pad has a holding tank for water which needs to be buried underground. You’re dealing with root systems of trees, so we had to figure out the location of where the tank can go,” de Wall said.

Bresciani said that the new aquatics facility is long overdue and that there is a shortage of pools in the city.

“Our pools are aging; we know we need to replace them,” she said. “For sure this is going to be a place where people can come and enjoy the day with the family.”

Sixty-nine trees were taken out of the ground and will be milled and used in the ceiling of the facility building.

“We have said that we are going to match the 69 trees — times three for every tree, 207 trees will go back into the park,” she said.

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