Worlds of Water Fun
The integration of science, art and economics is one of the key challenges faced by designers in building new, or re-imagining existing, outdoor aquatic parks.
“You want to give communities what their residents want, in terms of programs and amenities, said David L. Keim, Director of Public Market Business Development, Aquatic Development Group ADG, but you also want to be practical and suggest ways to prevent budget drain.”
“We’ll start the conversation off by asking: Are you looking for this new or upgraded facility to make money? There are some places we’ve found that in their business model aren’t focused on making a profit. Having an aquatic park is an amenity that they are providing for the citizens in the community, and as long as they aren’t losing money, then they are okay with investing more money into their facility to round out their aquatic offerings.”
There are three big processes that go into what a project is, Ryan Nachreiner, project director, WTI, explained. “The planning process begins with preliminary design and feasibility efforts, and that involves looking at the community and the area where the potential project is going to be developed.”
Ryan continued, “we need find out what else is out there—if other aquatic and recreation centers exist—to see where in the region there might be a deficiency in programming offerings. All this so that we know how we can best serve the community with different program options that could be developed. That is a huge component of the decision-making.”