On October 30, the founders of +Pool, an initiative to build the world’s first floating pool with a water filtration system, hosted their Fall Swim Benefit in Brooklyn, N.Y. The event featured the launch of an online auction for a chance to bid on a private swimming lesson with US Olympic gold medalist swimmer, Conor Dwyer, which is live until Nov. 14. Other hosts included Karen Wong, director of the New Museum; Marc Kushner, AIA, CEO of Architizer; and Sharon Davis, Assoc. AIA, principal of Sharon Davis Design, and recipient of Women for Women Active Citizen’s Award in 2010. Architecture enthusiast and friend of the +Pool designers, Kanye West, also attended the event. The funds raised at the event will further the building process of the structure, which is slated to be built in the East River of New York City by 2017.
Back in 2011, designers and founders Dong-Ping Wong, Archie Coates, and Jeff Franklin wondered if New Yorkers’ perceptions of the long-neglected river would change if they could experience a small, clean portion of it. Their solution was +Pool, a plus-sign-shaped, 9,300-square-foot structure designed fill up with the river water it cleaned using a layered filtration system built into the walls. The founders initiated the first portion of the project on Kickstarter in 2013, with the support of Family New York and PlayLab, using the funds to collect water quality data. An additional round of funding allows supporters to claim and personalize one of the 70,000 pool tiles that will be used to build the deck, walls, and floor of the structure, with the goal of raising the balance of the $15 million construction budget.
The design supports multiple configurations for a variety of uses, such as a space for kids, sports, laps, and lounging; or portions can be combined to form an Olympic-length lap pool. The current design proposes that the pool will filter about 500,000 gallons of water each day, removing bacteria, contaminants, and odors without using chemicals or additives, in order to meet local and state standards of New York. Currently, the team is working with architecture firm Persak & Wumfeld and system specialists Mackworth to build a floating lab that will be in the East River through the summer to test how the combined membrane filters will act with the seasons. They are also meeting with city planners and officials of New York to find an official site by 2017.