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Interesting Pool and Road Project

image dsc20200.jpgI just looked at an acquaintances house project which is currently in process. The site itself is two rai of land and eventually will contain a storage area, main house, entry road and two pools. The project started with a perimeter exterior wall built around the entire plot. Then there was the entry road into the site, which sits off to the right side of the plot. Now there are two pools being constructed, one as a deep fish pond and one for lap swimming.

Here are some interesting notes. This plot owner contracted with large contracting companies to do a fixed price bid on the perimeter wall, entry road and entry gate (separate projects). With each of these projects there were various ‘serious’ problems. On the pool project, he is working with a group of, what he describes as ‘very good builders’ which have agreed to do the pool on a day labor rate. He did relate however, the difficulty in supplying material in a timely manner and managing the project. This was especially true during an unplanned overseas trip recently, where things went a little bit out of kilter.

image dsc20201.jpgimage dsc20204.jpgThe project has some novel design ideas for the pool, which I haven’t seen before. First off, the entry road is designed to slope and capture rain water which can be routed to the fish pool. The water will drain off the road and enter the pool via large 30 centimeter diameter piping material. There is lower water exit point at the opposite side of the pool to allow for runoff. The lap pool will have a filtration and pumping section at one end. In this particular application, he isn’t planning on tiling the pool, which would be the norm in most places.




image dsc20202.jpgThere is an interior coating is of a special ‘hard tack’ cement (which holds up well under constant contact with water) which is used for the lap pool. For those who are interested in doing un-tiled pools, another possible option is to add various dies to the cement which will color the cement.

image dsc20210.jpgHere the exterior perimeter wall was done with an extra thin layer of stucco. Yes, they couldn’t have applied a thinner coat. The owner is in the process of having an extra stucco coat applied by the current workers. The stucco should be applied at least a centimeter thick. An indicator of an inadequate stucco coat is that you can clearly make out the shape and placement of the underlying cement blocks.

image dsc20208.jpgThe road likewise had a problem with inadequate metal rebar inside the concrete rim as seen here (ie. there was no rebar used).




This is just a cursory view of this project. It is to be seen how the pumping and filtration systems will be implemented. For comparisons sake: here is another project which show a pool being tiled.image DSC01065.JPG

1 Comment

  1. I think you could have a whole sub site on the subject of domestic pools Have you heard of Gunnite ? http://www.plumjam.com/pond/construct/index.cfm

    I experienced the pop up pool made from this construction method. The so called rebar was actually chicken wire. It was the cold season on the Joburg highveld, the time you empty your pool for annual cleaning , painting and maintenance. A sudden unexpected heavy shower occured and lasted around 2 hours (just like our monsoons) As we were sampling some sundowners on the stoop, there was an ominous rumble, we looked over to see that the pool have popped out of the ground about a meter due to the sudden rise in the water table, more a boat than a pool

    You need to be sure of the stability of the ground are particularly for a long lap pool as shown. These thing crack easily. A cracked pool drains dry quickly. A cracking pool can be irreparable by simple patching. You then have to have a special pvc liner put in, needs a specialist firm. Its quite difficult with a round bottomed pool of irregular shape (as is often made with Gunnite)

    This is not to say “dont have a pool” , just do one properly and dont skimp on the construction materials

    btw, they have to be cleaned for an hour every day and consume lots of chemicals in the hot weather In the ME our compound had a huge pool which had a special refrigerator unit to cool; the water down to 80F other wise it would reach ambient of around 110F which is like a hot bath, quite uncomfortable for swimming recreation.

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