“The Floating Pool Lady”

Bronx, NY | 2007 | 20,800 SF | $3.8 M


Inspired by the floating baths of late nineteenth-century New York, “The Floating Pool Lady” is a prototype for a new generation of movable waterfront pools for recreationally underserved communities. Initially moored in the East River just south of the Brooklyn Bridge, the 25-meter public pool is built on a 260-foot-long decommissioned barge with a reception area, offices, changing rooms and showers, snack bar, and a dining area. Programmed for night use, the goal was to create an airy, festive feel while maintaining views of the skyline. This meant using low-hung, shielded sources and not over-illuminating the space. The Floating Pool Lady is now moored in the Bronx at Baretto Point Park where it has become a catalyst for social change.


The Neptune Foundation
NYC Department of Parks and Recreation

Jonathan Kirschenfeld Associates, architect
C.R. Cushing & Company, naval engineers
Robert Sillman Associates, structural engineers
Joel Trace AIA, swimming pool consultant 

2009 International Design Awards: First Place/Renovation Category
2008 Venice Biennale
2008 Building Brooklyn Award: Brooklyn Innovator Category
2008 NYC Parks and Recreation Best Pool for 2008
2008 The Municipal Art Society of New York Masterwork Award: Best Neighborhood Catalyst
2007 Cooper-Hewitt National Design Awards: Runner-Up, People’s Design Award
2007 Dwell Magazine: “Nice Modernist”
2007 Waterfront Center Honor Award

Photography: Courtesy of Timothy Schenck (1) and Phillipe Baumann (2, 3)