Be sure to sign up for our email list, and follow us on Instagram and Facebook for the latest updates on our efforts to preserve these treasured landmarks. Below is a collection of news coverage of the pool projects.

South & Lowell Pools Stablilized as Plans to Refurbish Placed on Hold

By Margaret Carmel | Boise Dev, December 21, 2022

The City of Boise’s plans to either revamp or replace two historic pools are on hold due to lack of funds and its unknown when the project could start back up again.

On Tuesday, Mayor Lauren McLean announced the 1950s-era South and Lowell pools would remain closed for the foreseeable future until price escalations, material costs and other factors driving up costs slow down. This comes after city staff estimated it could cost up to $12 million to refurbish both pools, which have structural damage after decades of use, or up to $24 million to build two entirely new pools on site.

The announcement said the delay could last until 2025 when the market stabilizes and in the meantime, both pools have been fully winterized to ensure they do not incur any further damage while they are sitting unused.

Two Boise Pools Listed in National Register of Historic Places

By Jude Binkley | KTVB, September 14, 2022

BOISE, Idaho — If you have ever gone swimming at the Lowell or South pools in Boise, you can now say you have been swimming in a piece of history. The two pools were listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) this month.

They were built in 1953 and were the city's first purpose-built municipal pools. The feature a unique above-ground design that was patented by engineer Wesley Bintz.

“These nominations were brought to us," said Dan Everhart, the outreach historian at Idaho State Historical Society (SHPO). "These nominations came to us from the public and we worked with them to fine-tune the nominations to make sure they were ready for submittal to the National Park Service. The nominations came through a grassroots effort”

The SHPO coordinates the national register nominations for Idaho. In order to be listed, a site must be significant and retain its integrity.

Decision on South and Lowell Pools on hold while City figures out how to pay

By Margaret Carmel | Boise Dev, June 10, 2022

The public spoke loud and clear about their high hopes for renovations at South and Lowell pools, but Mayor Lauren McLean and the Boise City Council want to make sure the city has all of its budgeting ducks in a row first before committing to a plan.

At a work session on Tuesday, city council members heard a presentation from Parks and Recreation Director Doug Holloway and Facilities Program Manager Shawn Wilson about two concepts for how to revamp two of the city’s oldest neighborhood pools. South and Lowell pools date back to the early 1950s and have a unique two-story double-decker design. They have remained closed since 2020 while the city studied their condition and conducted extensive outreach with the public on what they hoped to see done with them.

Tim Woodward: Lowell Pool: old, run down, worth saving

By Tim Woodward | Idaho Press, May 15, 2022

The old pool clearly had seen better days.

Its cement was cracked, its paint faded. Dirt and leaves had collected in the bottom of the deep end, along with a purple Royal Crown whisky bag. A gray, gloomy afternoon completed the melancholy tableau.

The occasion was an open house at Lowell Pool, 1601 N. 28th Street, in Boise’s North End. Lowell, along with the pool at South Junior High School, has been closed for two summers. Built in 1953, they’ll need extensive repairs to reopen.

Dip into Boise's History

By Karen Day | IdaHome Magazine, May/June 2022

In today’s real estate market, this truth will seem stranger than fiction, but in 1952, Boise successfully presented a bond issue for $200,000 to fund the modernization of the Natatorium pool and build two new community swimming pools, one on the Bench and one in the North End. Wesley Bintz, an engineer from Lansing, Michigan, was chosen to build the two above-ground, ovoid-shaped pools. In 2022, there are fewer than 20 remaining Bintz above-ground pools in the U.S., with only eight still in use. Boise’s Bintz pools endure as iconic, Art Deco structures, but now sit emptied of cool water and swimmers, awaiting an unknown fate.

The future of South and Lowell neighborhood pools in Boise

By Steve Dent | Local 6 News, May 1, 2022

BOISE, Idaho — The Boise Parks and Recreation Department has been working since November to hear from the public on the future of two historic neighborhood pools in Boise.

South Pool on the Boise Bench and Lowell Pool near State Street were built in 1953, but they were closed down during the pandemic and now they need so some big changes to ever open again.

What should Boise do with 1950's era pools? City asking for public input on South, Lowell

By Anna Daly | Boise Dev, February 28, 2022

The City of Boise has officially launched two surveys about the future of two of its oldest pools – South Pool on the Boise Bench and Lowell Pool in the North End.

In 2020, the two pools closed due to COVID-19. During this time, Boise Parks and Recreation hired a consultant to study the pools which were both built in 1953 and designed by engineer Wesley Bintz and constructed by Jordan and Sons of Boise.

That 82-page analysis from firm Cushing-Terrell Architects and California-based firm Aquatic Design Group found both to be in “overall poor condition” and out of compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act standards. The study also found that it would cost $2.4 million to get each individual pool up to code.

What's the fate of 1950's-era elevated Boise Pools? City studies options

By Margaret Carmel | Boise Dev, July 7, 2021

The City of Boise hopes to hear from the public later this year about what to do with two of its oldest pools.

Late last year, while the city closed pools due to COVID-19, Boise Parks and Recreation hired a consultant to study the 1953-era Lowell Pool in the North End and South Pool, on the Boise Bench. That 82-page analysis from firm Cushing-Terrell Architects and California-based firm Aquatic Design Group found both to be in “overall poor condition” and out of compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act standards.