Why San Diego City Pools Are Closed: ‘Let Me Count the Excuses’

by on August 30, 2022 · 3 comments

in San Diego

By Colleen O’Connor

Look familiar?  Another National Weather Service warning for San Diego.


* WHAT…Dangerously hot conditions with temperatures up to 99 possible.
* WHERE…San Diego County Coastal Areas.
* WHEN…From Tuesday morning through Sunday evening.

It is undeniably hot out!

Why then are these San Diego’s Muni pools closed?

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Starting Monday, August 22 –  these four community pools will be temporarily closed.

  • Carmel Valley, 3777 Townsgate Drive, San Diego, CA 92130 (residents are encouraged to visit any open pools).
  • Colina Del Sol 4150 54th Place, San Diego, CA 92115 (programming will be absorbed into City Heights Swim Center, 4380 Landis St., San Diego, CA 92105).
  • Kearny Mesa, 3170 Armstrong St., San Diego, CA 92111 (programming will be relocated to Swanson Pool, 3585 Governor Drive, San Diego, CA 92122).
  • Martin Luther King, Jr., 6401 Skyline Drive, San Diego, CA 92114 (programming will be absorbed into City Heights Swim Center, 4380 Landis St., San Diego, CA 92105).

“A national carbon dioxide shortage” is the latest excuse.”
“A shortage of lifeguards” is another.  Afterall, they are going back to school.
“A leaky pipe” causing another pool to shut down.
And a “staffing shortage” covers the rest of the excuses.

Contrast San Diego’s excuses for pool closures to the City of Las Vegas’s jubilant summer openings announcement.

Las Vegas notice:

“It’s pool season, and we’ve opened all our pools.
“Everyone is invited to enjoy swim lessons, competitive aquatics teams for youth, dive-in movies, fitness events and themed pool parties at selected pools.
“But remember, pools may occasionally close for private special events, training, or facility maintenance/repair, so always check before going.   28 splash pads are also open throughout the city.
“All-summer pool passes are on sale now for lap and open swim periods at our pools.

Complete with affordable summer-long passes all good through Labor Day 2022.

So why has another decline in San Diego’s “Camelot by the Bay” image garnered national headlines?  And why can’t the Mayor and his “Get It Done” app fix the pools and keep them open?

Why, in fact, is the Joan Kroc Salvation Army pool still open?   Simple.  Because they have the chemicals needed.  They have the lifeguards needed.  They have the staff and the competence needed to keep a pool open.  And they plan ahead.

Why are so many San Diego neighbors’ backyard pools being rented out through an Airbnb type platform called Swimply?  Different chemicals, yes, but resourceful adaptations.

Is the YMCA pool on Friars Road open? How about the college and high school pools?  Are they open?  Last checked, the answer is yes.  So, why not San Diego Muni pools?

Are any neighboring cities, states, and countries willing to share their excess carbon dioxide?  Anybody ask?

Why is San Diego so seemingly inept at keeping its pools open in a summer with children and adults in serious need of a swim, a dip, a lesson in water safety—especially in a city surrounded by water.

Kids need access to activities that keep them out of trouble. Some relief from the heat. And a possible chance to become a world class athlete (as many San Diego swimming champions learned how before them—in San Diego Muni pools)?

Please, just “Get it Done!”
















{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Gravitas August 30, 2022 at 4:56 pm

Surely the Lifeguards Association can help recruit talent for these pools.


Geoff Page August 30, 2022 at 5:32 pm

Well, there’s, uh, a building we need to pay for first…


kh August 31, 2022 at 10:45 am

San Diego has a disappointing track record of not prioritizing these sort of public resources… libraries, pools, parks, park maintenance. Certainly it’s easier to just lock the gate than to properly allocate resources.

How about we axe the custodial staff at city hall until the pools and libraries are all properly staffed and funded? The mayor’s staff can empty their own trash and clean their own toilets.


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