Being close to water is an innate leisure and relaxation need of human beings, and some of the earliest water play facilities have a history of nearly 100 years. With the development of the water park industry, the way of playing in the water has gradually entered the stage of pursuing primitive and environmental protection, so how to transform the old antique community park into a beach splash pad suitable for today’s needs, with us to learn about the transformation process of Rainbow Beach in Indiana, USA.
Vincent, Indiana, has an incredible antique community park, which is called “Rainbow Beach” Water Center by local people. The Beach Splash Pad was established in 1937 as a project of the Federal Bureau of Project Progress Management. At the beginning, the project was established to provide employment opportunities for unemployed workers during the Great Depression, and also to solve the problem of children drowning in the nearby Wabashi River.
At that time, this beach water park was the best of its kind. There was a beach around the huge swimming pool and a tower in the middle. Water Bucket poured down from the tower in front of various colored lights, bringing a “rainbow” effect to the water supply. This extraordinary water park got its name. The swimming pool in the park is one of the earliest public swimming pools with both water slides and light functions, not to mention the “beach entrance” for tourists. Postcards from the 1940s called it “the most beautiful beach in Indiana”.
However, due to the overload operation of the park all the year round and the difficulty in maintenance, the management decided to redesign, dismantle the beach and add swimming lanes in the 1970s. After the redesign, the aqua playground has been used for more than 40 years, but the wear and tear again forced the community to re-examine the swimming pool and its surrounding facilities. Rainbow Beach Splash Pad Park needs to be completely rebuilt for the second time. However, like many splash pad parks and recreational facilities, funding has become a major obstacle to the protection of the community’s antiques.
This unique beach water park carries the unforgettable memories of the residents of Vincent. It was this memory that triggered the grassroots efforts of citizens and enterprises throughout the city to raise funds for the reconstruction of Rainbow Beach Splash Park.
All the water play activity centers in the city are adjacent to Greg Park, which is an integral part of Vincent’s recreational department. Steve Biman, the department head, was one of the main supporters of the renovation. Biman remembered that when he was in middle school, he rode to the swimming pool with his friends, saying that it was “the place to go” in summer. Biman said that the more he talked about Rainbow Beach with people, the more similar stories he heard. This proves to Biman that this swimming pool is a part of the local history, and the local residents hope to preserve and continue this history for future generations.
The budget for renovation and new construction is $3.4 million. Through an overall bond raising, $3.8 million was raised for the entire renovation project, including four different water bodies: three pools and a water splash area, a wall climbing and a lily walk.
Rainbow Beach has not only been renovated for the sake of beauty and attracting users, but also updated the environmental protection system. The competition pool, diving pool and activity pool are all designed with RenoSys vacuum filtration system. These are unique, gravity flow flooded systems that are installed in tanks below the pool level (all other pump room equipment is on the ground). The filter medium used in these systems is regenerated cellulose fiber. This cellulose fiber is considered to be more environmentally friendly than the more commonly used DE (diatomite) medium. Another feature of this type of filter is long backwashing time, which can save chemicals, save energy, reduce maintenance time, and almost no water loss.
The transformation team added some unique functions to the park, including customized children pool kiddie water slide and pool splash pad. They made a cute children’s slide in the shape of a blue whale, equipped with a built-in PVC liner to spray water attractions, and a child safety ladder. The equipment is called “Billy Blue” slide, which provides extra fun for children in the game pool area. RenoSys designed the slide and provided a buffer zone at the exit to ensure the safety and comfort of young children.
As Rainbow Beach is a landmark park in the area, every detail, including the drainage system, was carefully designed when the swimming pools were renovated. Generally, the size of surrounding drainage ditch is considered after design, which may cause problems in the future. In this case, the installed drains are made of stainless steel and customized according to the flow characteristics of the pool and each water body. The maintenance and repair cost of stainless steel drainage ditch is low, and they can prevent the buried pipeline from cracking due to freezing damage or ground movement. These drains are finished with PVC gratings, which are made of non fading, UV resistant, outdoor grade PVC and are certified to be skid resistant.
Because Indiana is very cold in winter and very humid in spring, the opening day of the renovated Rainbow Beach has been postponed. However, residents and tourists of Vincent can still enjoy the hot summer time until the last day of the swimming season. Without the determination of Vincent Community, the new Rainbow Beach will never become a reality. In fact, due to the joint efforts of municipal officials, business and residents, the park was awarded the “Community Achievement Award” by the Indiana Town Association. Rainbow Beach Splash Pad Water Park is now back to its former glory and has become a landmark water park in Indiana again.