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aquatic facilities splash pads NEIGHBOURHOOD SPRAY GROUNDS CONSTRUCTING SAFE WATER PLAY PARKS THAT OFFER UNIVERSAL ACCESSIBILITY A custom filtration system was installed, along with a chemical controller and ultraviolet (UV) light sanitizer, at the Parkdale Splash Pad in Belleville, Ont. Photos courtesy Acapulco Pools Ltd. (Water features by Rain Drop Products) BY FRANCINE GALL 60 ■ Pool & Spa Marketing PSM_Dec2015.indd 60 S plash pads transform imagination into new dimensions by delivering adventure, visual excitement, and creative fun for children of all ages. In fact, these features are becoming one of the most popular ways to cool off on a hot summer day. They can be found at local neighbourhood parks, community centres, and family campgrounds. Splash pads are everywhere and their popularity can be attributed to the fact they are the safest water play option, which also offer universal accessibility. Children of all ages can get hours of enjoyment out of spray grounds. Therefore, the goal of any builder is to ensure each splash pad is designed and built to the highest standards of safety and longevity. ■ CONSTRUCTION CONSIDERATIONS There are several construction considerations that need to be made when installing a splash pad. The most important is ensuring all the water drains appropriately. If it does not, it can become a safety concern. Therefore, the concrete pad should slope so it drains properly without leaving any standing water—even 25.4 mm (1 in.) of water is considered a drowning hazard. Further, the concrete finish has to be just right, as children of all ages will be running barefoot on the pad. There is a fine line between the finish being non-slip, but also not too abrasive on the feet of bathers. The underground plumbing used for splash pad construction is typically schedule 40 or 80 polyvinyl December 2015 2015-11-03 3:16 PM