Rotary Pool – Oshawa’s Centennial Legacy Project – finally set to see shovels in the ground this spring

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Published February 14, 2024 at 9:09 pm

Rotary pool and park re-development rendering

Oshawa’s Centennial Legacy Project has been a long time in the making, though it probably only seems like a hundred years to local residents.

The Rotary Park and Pool re-development is finally going to be a go this year as the city celebrates its centennial, with Oshawa incorporated as a City in 1924.

As for the pool, It’s been more than four years since residents have been able to enjoy a swim at Rotary Pool as pandemic delays and cost over-runs on the planned new outdoor facility have combined to prevent contractors from getting their feet wet on the project.

That situation is now changing as Council awarded the contract to build the new outdoor pool and re-develop the park late last month, with Maystar General Contractors, getting the nod to create the signature project at Gibb and Centre Street, just south of downtown.

Half of the $18.8 million cost of the project will be paid for this year, with the second phase to be funded in the 2025 budget.

The Rotary Park Redevelopment project will include:

  • a new outdoor pool with four lanes, a zero-entry pool area and toddler pool area
  • a destination playground
  • a splash pad
  • a parking lot
  • pathways
  • site amenities

Conceived in the 1920s, the park and pool have been enjoyed by families and visitors for decades until the pool was closed following the 2019 season due to structural deterioration.

Two years later the public was asked if they wanted a pool or a skating rink in its place and the overwhelming answer (80 per cent) from the nearly 1,000 responses was to have their beloved pool back, despite City staff’s preference for an outdoor rink instead.

The cost at the time for a new leisure pool, major splash pad and playground amenities was about $8 million.

A lot happened in the ensuing years, with post-pandemic supply chain issues and general inflation driving up the price of all infrastructure projects, with taxpayers now asked to pay more than double the original estimate.

The Rotary Park re-development and pool does have a few upgrades since the 2021 proposal and the project will now meet the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act and Oshawa’s Accessibility Design Standards.

The park’s location gives it a connection to the Joseph Kolodzie Trail and Brick By Brick Park, and close access to City Hall and downtown destinations and businesses.

Construction will begin this spring.

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