The Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association (COSPA) manages 7 outdoor swimming pools on behalf of The City of Calgary for use by Calgarians during the summer. The seven pools are Bowview, Forest Lawn, Highwood, Millican Ogden, Mount Pleasant, South Calgary and Stanley Park.
As not-for-profit society, COSPA’s Board of Directors has 10 volunteer members, 3 representing community associations, 3 pool fiscal agents (pool operators), 3 non affiliated members and 1 representative appointed by the City of Calgary.
Objectives of COSPA
To oversee and direct the management and operation of Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association.
To ensure the provision of fiscally responsible, safe and secure operation, maintenance and development of outdoor pool facilities, programs and services for the fitness and recreational swimming needs of citizens of Calgary.
To plan and carry out fund development activities in respect of Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Associations’ objects.
To establish policy, including capital maintenance and upgrading, scheduling and user fees to encourage the ongoing use of outdoor aquatic facilities.
To carry out the policies as established in the by-laws of the Association and in accordance with the agreement with the City of Calgary in furtherance of the aforementioned objects.
To promote utilization of Calgary Outdoor Pools.
To raise funds to achieve the objects of the Association. This may include accepting gifts, donations, grants, legacies, bequests and inheritances.
To borrow funds and establish a line of credit to achieve the objects of the Association.
To use funds of the Association only according to and in pursuit of these objects.
History of COSPA
Early in 2003, The City of Calgary Administration, in response to challenges to its operating budget, proposed the closure of 4 outdoor pools. The community associations involved in running these pools and the general public strenuously objected to City Council. The basic premise for the objection was that all outdoor pools were a much valued asset that enhanced the quality of life in Calgary and particularly to those communities which had an outdoor pool. City Council listened to the communities and public and granted a 2 year moratorium on the closures of any outdoor pool.
City Council approved the following recommendations:
Consider this report during Budget Finalization (2003 March 31) and approve an additional $315,000 to the 2003 Recreation Operating Budget, Program 426, to maintain the current level of funding for the nine (9) pools.
Approve the continued operation of the additional four (4) outdoor swimming pools, namely Bridgeland, Forest Lawn, Highwood and South Calgary, for the next two years in order to allow Administration to work with the impacted communities to re-evaluate their options around other summer recreational opportunities that may or may not include an aquatic element.
That the Administration be directed to provide a report on these efforts, that addresses community proposals/solutions to reduce City operating and capital expenditures on outdoor pools, for presentation to Council through the S.P.C on Community and Protective Services no later than 2004 February.
The alternative plan eventually became known as COSPA, and in December 2004, COSPA became incorporated under the Societies Act of Alberta. After more than two years of hard work by some very dedicated volunteers, Calgary City Council in January 2005 approved the formation of COSPA, and the City’s contribution of funds toward the Association’s operation and management of the seven outdoor pools and consequently the signing of a 15 year Management Agreement between The City of Calgary and Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association.
COSPA formally took over the management and long-term maintenance of the following 7 outdoor swimming pools:
- Bowview Pool 1910 - 6th Avenue NW
- Forest Lawn Pool 1706 – 39th Street SE
- Highwood Pool 25 Hoimwood Avenue NW
- Millican Ogden Pool 2094 – 69th Avenue SE
- Mount Pleasant Pool 2310 – 6th Street NW
- South Calgary Pool 3130 – 16th Street SW
- Stanley Park Pool 4011 1A Street SW
There is one other outdoor pool that is not under COSPA’s mandate which is Silver Springs Pool. The Silver Springs Community Association opted not to join COSPA and operates the pool under a separate agreement with The City of Calgary.
COSPA BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2015 - 2016
- President - Shannon Olafson
- Vice President - Matt Hudson
- Treasurer - Roger Leach
- Secretary - Johnny Hammill
- Director - Pieter van Lindenberg
- Director - Jamie Reid
- Director - Matt Wilson
- Director - Kathy Davidson
- Director - Anne Kennedy
- Director - Jack Birkett
- Past President - Vacant
- Executive Director - Jenny Jensen