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Wild Swimming in the River Thames

London architecture firm Studio Octopi has come up with a plan to introduce "wild swimming" to a site on the River Thames next to Blackfriars Bridge. It submitted the idea for the Thames Baths Project to a design contest run by the Architecture Foundation earlier this year, and now wants to turn it into reality.

What do you think? Would it tempt you to dive in?

Monday, November 4, 2013 05:00 EST | 14
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Nicole Ferraro
Nicole Ferraro  
11/4/2013 1:49:14 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
Hi Chris. Thanks for the reply. Regarding the +Pool, you may find some better info here -- but my understanding is that the river water goes through a multi-layer filtration system. So I don't think it's a chlorinated pool sitting in the river -- because it's river water that people will be swimming in, except it'll be going through a filtration system.

Who knows how far this project will get, but they've received enough funding to get started with the testing phase.

richheap
richheap  
11/4/2013 1:19:13 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
@Chris: I hope Boris sees it. And Boris, if you're reading this comment thread, we'd be delighted to film an interview with you for Future Cities. Don't be a stranger.

ChrisRomerLee
ChrisRomerLee  
11/4/2013 12:33:54 PM
User Rank Village Voice
Re: River pools
Rich, Thanks for your interest in the project. Its worth remembering that The Architecture Foundation, Royal Academy of Arts and RSH+P came up with the open call, so without them none of this would be being discussed. I'll keep you up to date with things as they move forward. Thanks again for the filming, perhaps Boris will see it...

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
11/4/2013 11:49:48 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
Actually, I admit to the same thing, @Rich. I too can swim, but inefficiently. At the gym pool last year, I was able to swim laps only in a kind of makeshift sidestroke, then turning on my back, then ending in a dog paddle. No championship for me!

richheap
richheap  
11/4/2013 11:46:00 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
@Mary: Yes I can, but I've got a very inefficient style so I get tired quickly. Nowadays I can bob around in the baby pool with my daughter and let my wife do some real swimming.

But I would consider adult swimming lessons. I've started playing a new sport recently, and spent an hour yesterday trying to keep up with guys ten years younger and much fitter than me. They didn't get the better of me, but I could maybe do with working on my stamina.

richheap
richheap  
11/4/2013 11:42:12 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
Hi Chris. I just wanted to say thanks again for joining me for this video, and I'll follow the project with interest. I wonder if anyone watching could tell that London was in the grips of a so-called "superstorm" when we filmed your interview?!

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
11/4/2013 11:42:05 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
Are you able to swim at all, @Rich? (Not to put you on the spot, just curious.)

richheap
richheap  
11/4/2013 11:39:26 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
@Mary: I'm happy to avoid swimming at all costs, except taking my daughter to the pool so she can develop confidence and enjoyment in swimming that I never have. My wife tells me I should take adult swimming lessons but I can't quite shake the antipathy.

richheap
richheap  
11/4/2013 11:37:05 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: River pools
@Amy: People do fish in the River Thames, but it mostly happens upstream before the river gets to central London. You wouldn't do it near Blackfriars Bridge.

ChrisRomerLee
ChrisRomerLee  
11/4/2013 10:57:19 AM
User Rank Village Voice
Re: River pools
Thanks Nicole. Its similiar to the +Pool, but it was really important that this was about Londoners being up close and personal with the Thames. The +Pool looks like its a chlorinated pool floating in the river? Very much like the Josephine Baker Piscine in Paris. Everyone sometimes forget that Londoners swim all year round in Hyde Park's Serpentine and Hampstead Heath lakes. These are not that clean. I understanding that the post Thames Super Sewer will mean the water is cleaner than the Serpentine but this information is hard to get hold of at the moment.

Your readers might be interested in this article in The Independent over the weekend http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/londons-41bn-super-sewer-is-kicking-up-a-stink-as-campaigners-label-it-a-monster-8919213.html

 

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