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  • Joe Capozzi

Oceanfront swimming pool: Two new designs to be considered by Lake Worth Beach Commission Dec. 6

Updated: Nov 28, 2022



LAKE WORTH BEACH city commissioners will consider two designs for a new oceanside municipal swimming pool to replace the 51-year-old pool that has been shuttered since 2017.


The designs, each with a price tag of nearly $12 million, will be presented by CPZ Architects at City Hall on Dec. 6.


Option A, a pool with two intersecting rectangles, carries a price tag of $11.96 million. Option B, a rectangular pool with curved sides, would cost $11.87 million.


Both designs feature amenities from a wish list compiled last year by commissioners, including a splash pad, taco bar, changing rooms and restrooms, lifeguard offices, a sunset viewing area and areas for food trucks, according to documents on the city’s website.


Both price tags include $928,931 for demolition of the original pool.


Option A for a public swimming pool at the Lake Worth Beach and Casino complex (City of Lake Worth Beach/CPZ Architects)


How to pay for the pool will be the next step once the commission chooses a design, but commissioners have said they will keep an open mind to all sources of financing, including state and federal grants. City officials have said they’ll need construction-ready plans before they can apply for most grants.


City officials earlier this year identified $1 million for the pool from money in the pandemic-related American Rescue Plan Act. Commissioners in July broached the possibility of working with non-profits to bring in money for the pool.


"This is tourist destination. This helps the county, this helps the state. This is where we need to put our tentacles out, if you will, and touch whatever we can to create the budget to fulfill the need that we find,'' Commissioner Sarah Malega said in a July 5 commission meeting.


Lake Worth Beach has debated the pool off and on at least since 2015. Since then, there have been changes on the city commission and in city administration.


It comes at a time when cities like Palm Beach Gardens and Riviera Beach are bringing in more water park-like offerings, such as slides and meandering rivers, to public pools.


Option B for a public swimming pool at the Lake Worth Beach and Casino complex (City of Lake Worth Beach/CPZ Architects)


In 2017, a consultant recommended Lake Worth Beach replace the crumbling 50-meter pool first opened in 1971, with a water park including lazy rivers.

In recent discussions, commissioners agreed the new one will be aimed at serving the public by offering swimming lessons and affordable admission rates while also serving as a tourism destination with landscaping and amenities to enhance the city’s beachfront.


“Simple but kind of elegant and beautiful,’’ Commissioner Kim Stokes said July 5 about what a new pool could look like. “I don't think we want to go to a pool and feel like we are just setting in the middle of a ton of concrete.’’


To help inspire the commission, Vice Mayor Christopher McVoy this summer took personal field trips to three South Florida destination spots: Guanabanas Restaurant in Jupiter, Hugh Taylor Birch State Park in Fort Lauderdale, and the Venetian Pool in Coral Gables.


(City of Lake Worth Beach)


The commission watched a slideshow of his photos Aug. 2. The first two destinations offered ideas on how to enhance the area around the pool with landscaping and umbrellas while the third showed how a public pool can look unique.


In 2017, Lake Worth Beach closed the pool because of leaks, failing equipment and the high cost to repair it. At the time the city was spending $300,000 a year to maintain the pool while generating $66,000 in revenue.


CPZ Architects of Plantation was retained to come up with designs. Two earlier designs were rejected. The latest designs, part of a third order approved for CPZ, cost the city $32,000.


In all, the city has spent $347,058 on consultants for the pool since 2015, said assistant city manager Juan Ruiz. He said that breaks down to $320,000 for CPZ Architects, $14,840 for Kimley Horn and $12,218 for aquatic consultant Bob McCallister.


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About the author

Joe Capozzi is an award-winning reporter based in Lake Worth Beach. He spent more than 30 years writing for newspapers, mostly at The Palm Beach Post, where he wrote about the opioid scourge, invasive pythons, the birth of the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches and Palm Beach County government. For 15 years, he covered the Miami Marlins baseball team. Joe left The Post in December 2020. View all posts by Joe Capozzi.


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