Aldergrove families enjoyed their first dip in the Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre (ACUCC) pools this summer after a decision was made by Township council to re-open much of the centre’s Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience on Wednesday, Aug. 19. (Township of Langley/Special to the Star)

Aldergrove pool reopens, to the delight of the community

Registration online provides way to cap swimmers at 40 due to COVID-19

Aldergrove’s pools and hot tub reopened to swimmers last week – some of whom had been begging for its return in the five months since the COVID-19 shuttered Langley Township facilities in mid-March –including Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre.

Re-opening was a challenging prospect, according to Township staff, who were concerned about a financial deficit that could grow if the pool re-opened during the pandemic.

“The pool is most expensive with overall staffing costs,” Township administrator Mark Bakken explained to mayor and council during a late July council meeting.

But to many Aldergrove taxpayers, the Township’s estimated cost of $250,000 for the ACUCC pool to be open until the end of 2020 was worth the price if they could once again go for a swim.

Some of the costly COVID-19 changes include limiting swimmers to 40 to comply with current provincial health guidelines and closing pool areas between each 90-minute session to sanitize and clean before the next.

“If we remain closed, very limited expenses will be incurred,” Bakken said.

But Township council voted for re-opening.

RELATED: Re-open pools to swimmers, Langley Township urged

Aldergrove resident Barry Smith, 68, hit the pool the first four mornings after reopening.

“For a senior like me, using the pool every morning is critical,” he said. “It provides relief for the pain in my spine and neck.”

Daily aquatics is such an important part of Smith’s life that a month ago, he and another senior swimmer visited Township Mayor Jack Froese in an effort to persuade him to re-open the Aldergrove pool.

“We waited with bated breath,” the senior recalled.

Formerly a Murrayville resident, Smith was part of a community of 30 or more seniors who swam every morning at W.C. Blair pool to maintain their level of fitness and soothe their aches.

“I find it a godsend,” he said about the 22 years of low-impact workouts Township’s pools have offered.

Even though there were no clear lanes designated for guests to swim laps, Smith found a deep-end corner of the ACUCC’s 25-metre pool where he got some steps in.

READ MORE: Aldergrove swim club prepares safe return to the pool amid COVID-19 pandemic

What presented a struggle for the senior was his inability to use a senior recreation pass he bought to cover the cost of the swim sessions.

“It is hard to take with no income,” Smith explained, as what normally costs around $1.50 per swim (with a monthly recreation pass) is currently more than $4 each use.

“That’s more than double the cost,” he added.

Another COVID-19 safety measure at the newly reopened Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience included the shuttering of change rooms and lockers.

Aldergrove pool guests had to come swim ready, in bathing suits, with towels in-hand, and were encouraged to leave their valuables at home before partaking in the pool.

Swimmers were instructed by pool staff to keep a two-metre distance from other users and refrain from touching their eyes or face.

Aldergrove resident Ariane Marcotte, who also took a dip in the pool, found the Township’s new social distancing procedures at the pools “well organized.”

Local volunteer, Brit Gardner, spoke on behalf of others in the community, when she said: “We are pleased our voices have been heard and the outdoor pool has been re-opened.”

“We hope these precautions will allow for wider access to public recreation in the near future,” she concluded.

Cool off with an afternoon, or evening swim this week at the Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience at Aldergrove Credit Union…

Posted by Township of Langley on Tuesday, August 25, 2020

AldergroveLangley Township

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Aldergrove resident Barry Smith (above) swam and hot tubbed every morning, for the first four mornings, since ACUCC pools reopened on Aug. 19. (Township of Langley)

Just Posted

UPDATE: Missing man found

‘Family and police are concerned for his wellbeing at this time’

Woodward filed Liberal nomination papers before brief NDP candidacy

Woodward said he was exploring the option of running for the BC Liberals

Bill Masse runs for Greens again in a different Langley riding

Masse will run in the Langley riding, not Langley East this time

Defence in Fraser Valley chicken abuse cases asks BC Supreme Court to drop the charges

Sofina Foods and Chilliwack company say undercover video by ‘vigilante group’ violates Charter rights

Langley Liberal candidate answers questions online

An event tonight (Monday) includes Margaret Kunst

Weekend sees 267 cases, 3 deaths in B.C.; Dr. Henry says events leading to COVID spread

There are currently 1,302 active cases in B.C., while 3,372 people are under public health monitoring

Liberals seek to fast track new COVID-19 aid bill after CERB expires

Government secured NDP support for legislation by hiking amount of benefits by $100 to $500 per week

Police investigating shooting in North Delta

Police say occupants of two vehicles exchanged gunfire near 120th Street and 82nd Avenue

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. VOTES 2020: Echoes of HST in B.C. debate over sales tax

Cannabis, tobacco, luxury cars still taxed in B.C. Liberal plan

TransLink CEO asks riders not to enforce mask rules after Surrey bus punch-up

A fight broke out on a bus at 96 Avenue and Scott Road involving a man who refused to wear a mask

She warned her son about toxic drugs, then he was dead

Donna Bridgman’s son died at the age of 38 in Vancouver

B.C. food and beverage producers set record sales in 2019

Farmed salmon again leads international exports

Most Read