Photo cred - Save Royal Victoria Pool

Atop Mount Royal, right behind Royal Victoria Hospital, in a secluded aquatic sanctuary surrounded by trees and removed from the noisy bustle of downtown, is a not-so-secret pool that Montrealers have fallen in love with. The only problem is, it's been closed all year, and will remain that way, unless some community action is taken.

Montreal's "Secret Mountain top Pool" had become a frequent spot for tourists and citizens alike, until last August, when a man drowned in the pool, and the grounds were closed for the rest of the summer 2013 season.

Before then, the pool was kept open and operated by the McGill University Health Centre, charging only $5 a day to any and everyone.

This year, because of Royal Victoria's preparations to move to the new NDG super-hospital,  the hospital's funds and personnel were limited, and so the pool remain closed. When the hospital relocates, an official closure of the secret pool may be an unfortunate consequence.

Olivier Lapierre does not want the pool to close, so he created the “Save Royal Victoria Pool” facebook page to gain, and showcase, public support for the hidden downtown pool.

The Gazette spoke to Lapierre, who believes there are probably 4 things that can save the Royal Victoria Pool:

  • It is officially sanctioned as a municipal pool by the city
  • McGill University purchases the area and continues operations
  • A community group oversees the pool's administration
  • A kickstarter/public fundraising initiative is launched to cover all costs in opening the pool

Community officials of the Peter McGill area (the district the pool falls under) are supporters of the Lapierre's initiative. At a borough council meeting to be held tomorrow, a feasibility study will be sanctioned to see if the pool can become a part of the municipality.

You can help out the project by heading to the Save Royal Victoria Pool facebook page and giving it a like to show your support. There are only 558 likes on the page right now, let's make that number soar so city officials know just how much Montrealers want this urban oasis to be open next summer.

Photo cred - Save Royal Victoria Pool

For more on all things Montreal, follow Michael on Twitter @MDAlimonte

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