SAN FRANCISCO, CA—The newly remodeled Angelo J. Rossi Pool will welcome back community members Saturday with a celebratory free swim in its modern facility, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department announced today.
The Feb. 12 free swim will be held from noon to 3:30 p.m. with intermittent breaks at Rossi Pool, located at 600 Arguello Blvd. A 2022 pool schedule can be found here.
The beloved Richmond District pool and recreation center had a soft opening this week following a $15 million renovation. The complete makeover of the building includes upgrades to its plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems, improved air quality and heating, a new roof, and a remodel of its lobby and locker rooms to meet current ADA standards and the needs of modern swimmers. The renovation also includes a new pool deck, pool shell lining, and equipment. The project, which is targeted to meet LEED Gold standards, features new building windows, paint, and structural seismic upgrades.
In the surrounding park, the baseball backstop and cage have been refurbished and the tennis courts have been resurfaced and outfitted with new equipment. New landscaping and irrigation were also part of the improvements.
“For close to 70 years, generations of San Franciscans have learned to swim at Rossi Pool,” said Mayor London Breed. “This renovation ensures that families, students, and members of this community can continue to enjoy this neighborhood gem for years to come and stay connected to the history of this pool and park.”
The project broke ground Sept. 4, 2019. The majority of its funding comes from the 2012 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond. Additional funding was provided by the Open Space Fund.
“Rossi Pool has been a crucial asset to high school swim teams and Richmond District residents. I’m thrilled to see it re-open as a vibrant aquatic center with upgraded amenities,” said District 1 Supervisor Connie Chan.
“Rossi Pool is a beloved treasure, a place where countless San Franciscans have learned to swim, found joy in the water, and tested their skills through competition. The renovation, which preserves the building’s art deco details, ensures future generations will create lasting memories at Rossi,” said San Francisco Recreation and Park Department General Manager Phil Ginsburg.
An 8-foot by 48-foot mural by local artist Owen Smith adorns the pool area, featuring a diverse group of children frolicking in a fantasy interpretation of underwater life, which includes fish and plants native to the San Francisco Bay. The dye-sublimated aluminum panels are designed to evoke the freedom and happiness of swimming.
“Through San Francisco’s Public Art Program, we are proud to have partnered with the Richmond District community, Rec & Park and local artist Owen Smith, to bring this buoyant and joyous new mural that anchors the northern wall of the renovated Rossi Pool natatorium,” said San Francisco Arts Commission Director of Cultural Affairs Ralph Remington.
The pool building was constructed in 1956 by architect H.C. Baumann, designed in the modernism style with art deco details like the front entrance lettering. The surrounding grounds were once a victory garden honoring those who fought in World War II.