This post provides some ideas to think about when applying a Carpe Diem Strategy to Pools and Aquatic Centres.
I had a recent conversation with an Aquatic Centre Manager relating to asset management plan updating and was pleased to hear how busy the Aquatic Centre was.
That is a good sign of a community facility being well used. A busy facility creates its own tensions as to how to schedule major maintenance and any required upgrades without too much disruption for facility users.
My base assumption is that following COVID-19 lockdowns there will be a period of partial lockdown, and then a full resumption of community use of the facility.
There will probably be pent-up demand as people want to get out and back to usual routines and activities, so facilities are likely to enter a period of higher use once they reopen.
The COVID-19 lockdowns provide an opportunity to catch up on operations, streamlining processes, updating systems as necessary and undertaking any major maintenance or capital expenditure if it is likely to have been disruptive to the facility.
It is a good opportunity to update asset inventory/register and to undertake condition assessments while everything is quiet.
I have included below a short list of possible tasks to consider:
- Review and complete any major deferred maintenance
- If you can bring forward any capital expenditure that would have disrupted operations of the facility. Do this work now, whilst everything is closed
- Update any signage as necessary
- Review and reconfigure reception and payment areas as necessary to take into account the increased distancing requirements going forward
- Complete any facility painting required
- Undertake inspections and any maintenance of electrical, heating, pumps, filtration, HVAC, lighting systems
- Review your systems and processes – if they need updating now is a good time to do that
- Complete a condition inspection of all assets – revise maintenance schedules and maintenance work as necessary following the inspection results
- Update your asset inventory/register with any new assets, and any disposed of assets
- Review your seating, signage and seating policies for the go forward
- If you need to empty a pool to carry out some work – now is an excellent time to do this, as it will cause no disruption
- You will need to undertake a thorough clean and disinfection of your facility before reopening
- What do you need to complete this?
- Who do you need to organise?
- Do you need any additional materials, disinfectants etc.?
- Do the planning and get these ordered.
- If any of your parking areas need resurfacing, now is an excellent time to complete that work
- If any of your parking areas need guides and lines repainted, now is an excellent time to complete that work
- If you have grounds and plantings, it is a great time to undertake any required maintenance work on these
Can I encourage you to seize the day and use this unique opportunity to get ahead of work and prepare for the welcome resumption of service delivery at your facility?
Finally, please do not forget your various contractors and service providers. They need work and income as much as anyone else over the next few months.
If there is no work provided this increases with the risk that they will not be available when you need them going forward.
Please communicate with them, share your plans, indicate what work will be required and when so that they can plan to assist you as required.