Melbourne-based architect Damian Rogers has proposed a floating wave pool for surfers in Victoria Harbor. The heated pool would filter salt water from the harbor, and could create waves up to five feet tall. A sandy beach, grassy hill, and a row of shops are also included in the design. The international engineering firm Arup is leading the proposal with Rogers’s idea.
Floating pools in urban settings aren’t a new idea. There have been proposals for filtered pools in Eastern European rivers and New York’s own East River. But as far as we can tell, this is the first floating pool in a major city to incorporate waves (although a similar concept is in the works in the mountains of North Wales).
Max Wells, the CEO of Surfing Victoria, expressed hopes for the project to The Age. He believes that unlike past plans for floating surf pools (yes, apparently there have been others), this proposal has the potential to really happen. “The reason for that is they’ve got the right location and the indication that it will be available to them,” he said. “I can imagine having surfers in suits heading for an after-work session and kids coming to Docklands carrying surfboards on Melbourne’s trains and trams.”
The pool would likely be used as a location for international surfing competitions as well as for lessons and as a public beach. The project would cost at least $6.9 million and would need to be approved by Melbourne City Council and Places Victoria, although the project is planned to be privately funded by developers. Both organizations have already met with Arup about the proposal.