Emerald Hills Aquatic Facility

Location: Sherwood Park, AB

This LEED Silver aquatics facility totals 4,910 square meters and is two storeys plus a partial basement. The building features a six-lane, 25-metre lap swim pool; a four-lane,25-metre adjustable depth swimming pool; children’s teaching pool; whirlpool, steam room and change facilities; and 600 square metres for fitness/wellness components and multi-use areas.

The Emerald Hills Aquatic Facility has many complex details and, in particular, the geometry of the building envelope. Through collaboration with the owner and consultants, Graham worked to ensure that such a unique design was, in fact, constructable. We also performed value engineering to ensure that cost was optimized, minimizing spending on less necessary components.

This facility has a dedicated teaching and rehabilitation pool complete with a movable floor. The movable floor allows swimmers of all ability levels— including those with disabilities or injuries — to be safely and effectively taught or rehabilitated. Furthermore, the overall facility has excellent accessibility provisions, including ramps and specialized lifts, so that all users can more easily enjoy its amenities.

This aquatic facility has been designed with both maintenance and durability in mind. Specifically, the pools have been constructed from concrete rather than an alternative pool construction system that is more prone to leaks over time. The paint system in the pool hall is also specifically designed to reduce maintenance frequency, while the shower areas are completely tiled (including the ceilings) to improve moisture resistance. This also goes for the substrates, which are cement board rather than drywall, and there is no timber in the pool hall area.

Contract Value


Prime Consultant

MTa Architecture

Project Owner

Strathcona County

Contract Format

Stipulated Price

Completion Date

June 2016

Contract Duration

22 months