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Coquitlam pool renos to bring in 65k more visits a year

The city of Coquitlam will begin a $5-million renovation, expansion project in February of the City Centre Aquatic Complex (CCAC).

If you want to burn off some Christmas calories on the treadmill or take up a yoga class at the City Centre Aquatic Complex (CCAC) in the new year, you’ll have to head next door.

As of February, the Coquitlam fitness areas will close for upgrades — with the equipment and programs moving to the Innovation Centre, beside the Evergreen Cultural Centre.

Swimming, however, will still be on during the year-long construction project.

Monday, city council OK’d the final design for the CCAC renovation and expansion — and earmarked $450,000 from the COVID-19 contingency fund for potential labour and materials delays during the pandemic — to launch the $5-million capital project.

When done, at the end of 2021 or early 2022, patrons will see a new layout to the City Centre building with the former physiotherapy space becoming the new weight room, the café also bumped up to the foyer, and the multi-purpose and fitness rooms moved down the hallway, to the south end. 

As well, a small space for outdoor fitness will be created, at the corner of Guildford Way and Town Centre Boulevard.

Don Luymes, Coquitlam’s general manager of parks, recreation, culture and facilities, told council the facility updates are expected to bring in 65,000 more visits a year, totalling $250,000 in revenues for the city.

But that amount is expected to be offset by rising costs, starting in 2022: $39,000 more to operate the centre plus an additional $213,000 for new programs, facility and support expenses. As well, the city will lose $76,000 annually from the physiotherapy business lease.

“With the expanded classes and program offerings, additional staffing will be needed,” Tiina Mack, Coquitlam’s manager of recreation and culture facility planning, told the Tri-City News. “The city will review staffing needs once room programming has been finalized, closer to the completion date.”

The aim of the renos and expansion is to meet current and future demand — especially as new homes go up in the growing City Centre and Burke Mountain neighbourhoods — and to be more inclusive for women and seniors, with more privacy and easier access. 

In all, the modernized CCAC will include: 

• 30 more group fitness classes per week

• up to 20 new spin classes per week

• 21 new pieces of fitness equipment

• 30 more aquatic leadership programs per year

• more free weight and stretching space

• and more childminding sessions

As for future changes, Mack said the whole facility is on the list for improvements between 2026 and 2031 as part of the Aquatics Services & Infrastructure Strategy, “which is anticipated to include work on the two tanks and the addition of an outdoor pool,” she said.

Opened in 1994, CCAC now has an eight-lane Olympic-sized lap pool, a wave pool, a slide, rope swing, whirlpool, steam room and sauna. Last year, the facility saw about 550,000 visits.