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Toronto Cricket Club’s beautiful retractable pool enclosure sets a new standard for private club aquatics


Related: OpenAire COO nominated for 2010 RBC Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award / Edmonton’s Prestigious Royal Glenora Club offers members a breathtaking new pool with an OpenAire retractable enclosure / City of Fairfield enhances aquatics program thanks to OpenAire retractable roof     

Members at the exclusive Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club have an exciting new space in which to swim. As of July 2010, they can take a dip under their airy and beautiful OpenAire retractable pool enclosure – or open up the roof for a complete outdoor swimming experience.

The new structure comes on the heels of a debate about what to do with the club’s outdoor pool. A number of long-time members were adamant about their desire to swim outdoors and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine in the summer months. But others wanted to enjoy the pool year-round. And many potential members were waiting for an indoor pool to be built before signing up.

Chris McCormack of Toronto’s McCormack Architects partnered with OpenAire to help create an elegant solution that would please everyone. OpenAire worked closely with the architectural firm to design, manufacture and install a unique retractable enclosure that literally turns the indoor pool into an outdoor one whenever the weather allows.

The enclosure is a beautiful, modern shape that enhances the traditional look of the mid-century flat-roofed structure around it. The curved roof bends gently towards a clear glass wall, creating an elegant space while enhancing the image of one of Toronto’s most popular private clubs.

The 75’ by 97’ enclosure houses a 25m lap pool, and has a retractable polycarbonate roof and 1” insulated glass in all the sidewalls. The roof features rain sensors that close up the panels at the first sign of rain. A state-of-the-art touch screen interface makes it simple to operate, and offers at-a-glance controls for automation, HVAC, and more.

The long roof panels retract from the eaves up, allowing the roof to open up over 50% to just beyond the apex of the curved roof. Sidewalls are made up of 10’-5” multiple stacking doors, which all move aside into a small stacking bay, leaving two walls completely open to the air.

“It’s unlike anything we’ve built before, ” says OpenAire President Mark Albertine. “With the new technologies we’re using for the roof and the doors, the only structural elements left between swimmers and the sky are the support beams. Everything else is completely open, making it much more of an outdoor atmosphere. Swimmers don’t just feel like they’re outside. They ARE outside.”

OpenAire also created an 8’ high, 70’ long glass-enclosed viewing mezzanine that overlooks the pool area. Built onto the second floor of the adjoining building, it was an element of the project that required careful planning.

“Our expertise isn’t only in building free-standing structures, ” says Albertine. “Our projects often involve changes to an existing building. My team is justifiably proud of the work we’ve done at the Toronto Cricket Club – we’ve taken a curved, ultra-modern glass and aluminum shape and integrated it with a traditional brick building – and the result is breathtaking.”

The final product is a stunning space that offers an experience no other club in Toronto can match.

“The new pool rounds out our facility offerings, making us truly a full service multi-sport Family Club, ” says Doug Knights, General Manager, Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club. “It’s a stunning space – and a wonderful, inviting place to have a swim. Our members keep telling me how much they love it. The outdoor swimming enthusiasts can soak up the sun and the air in the warmer months, and everyone can enjoy the pool all year round. Plus, it’s a big draw for people thinking about joining.”

Toronto Cricket Club members are already taking advantage of the new facility. Everyone loves the versatility of the OpenAire solution.

About OpenAire

OpenAire has been designing and manufacturing beautiful, high-quality, environmentally conscious retractable roof enclosures and skylights for over 20 years. Their commercial projects include the Americana Indoor Water Park in Niagara Falls, Canada, Big Splash Island in French Lick, Indiana, the Palms Casino & Resort in Las Vegas and the world’s largest indoor waterpark with a retractable aluminum dome in Ukraine. By combining your unique vision with OpenAire’s expertise, incredible venues are a reality.

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