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Peeling Paint Reveals Structure Threat

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

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Peeling paint in a Winnipeg public facility has tipped off local officials to a major structural problem, averting a possibly disastrous collapse, according to officials in the capital city of Manitoba, Canada.

After the pool’s superintendent reported paint peeling from concrete tiles that encased 10 pillars supporting the roof of the city's Sherbrook Pool, city inspectors found that the supports had eroded, according to reports.

Sherbrook Pool
Images: CTV News

Peeling paint led to the discovery of structural issues, including possible roof support failure at this 82-year-old public pool in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

The pool, built in 1930, closed in late November when the structural issues were first uncovered. The “sudden” closure sparked outrage among members of the community, as the city did not speak publicly regarding the reasons behind the closing until Dec. 20.

'Pay Attention to Paint Peeling'

When they did speak, city officials noted that without the peeling paint, the erosion issue might not have been noticed in a building inspection.

“It’s always important to pay attention to paint peeling,” Iain Day, the acting manager of municipal accommodations, told the Winnipeg Free Press.

Day said the building would be closed until the city could fully assess the situation. A private engineering firm is assisting the city with a report.

The document will reportedly determine the pool’s fate.

Causing a Splash

When officials closed the pool, canceling swimming lessons and other events, Winnipeggers were distraught.

Friends of Sherbrook Pool

Friends of Sherbrook Pool begged the city for answers after officials abruptly closed the pool in late November without explanation.

A group of pool patrons, known as the “Friends of Sherbrook Pool,” assembled a news conference to plead for answers behind the abrupt closure. In the 1990s, the group helped raise $5 million to aid in renovation efforts, including improvements to the building envelope.

“I think by accepting the money at the time, the city accepted us as a partner and it’s not a good way to treat a partner, keep us in the dark,” said John Hutton, Friends of Sherbrook Pool board president.

Winnipeg officials said they had not known the potential risk when they found the erosion and had decided to close the facility as a precaution. They said they had not immediately explained the closing to avoid getting people "excited," reports said.

Public Facilities Not Maintained

“The fact is, we haven’t maintained the pool or any of our pools or facilities in this city,” according to Harvey Smith, a city councilor.

In August, the city closed the Civic Centre Parkade after engineers discovered structural-integrity issues with the parking facility, reports said. An arena was also recently closed for mold remediation.


Tagged categories: Building owners; Coating failure; Corrosion; Maintenance programs; Peeling; Renovation

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