Aquatic Center a High Priority for South Whidbey Residents

A 2019 Parks District survey of the community’s priorities received nearly 700 responses, with more than 80% expressing support for an aquatic wellness center. This level of support made the aquatics wellness initiative the highest ranked project in the 6-year Parks District Comprehensive Plan. In early 2021 another survey, specific to an aquatic center, was released by our feasibility consultant, Ballard*King and Associates. This survey received more than 1700 responses representing more than 4300 of our citizens. Key takeaways from the survey include:

The Foundation hired Ballard*King and Associates, specialists in recreational facilities planning and operations, to analyze the survey data and recommend the best plan for moving forward. Read more details about the survey here.

Lessons Learned from the Past

This project has been in the works for a long time. After a failed bond measure in 2008, we engaged deeply with our community and learned from their feedback. As a result, we’ve re-tooled the project, with a vision that is more focused, appropriately scaled, and meets the diverse needs of our community. We also heard loud and clear that we need to be more resourceful in seeking funding from a variety of public and private sources. Since 2008, we have:

Facility & Location

A multipurpose facility

We are committed to building an environmentally friendly, state of the art, well managed facility that is safe, welcoming, functional, and financially sustainable. 

Elements of the facility are likely to include:

Centrally located

The chosen site is at the entrance to the Community Park on Maxwelton Road in Langley on land already owned by the Parks District. It meets all of the following criteria for site selection:


These programming needs, tailored to our South Whidbey population, will guide design decisions and the layout for the facility.

Aquatics programming continues to evolve, and you can expect to find creative and innovative programs to improve your health, wellness, and fitness every week in the facility schedule.

Status & Timeline

The Foundation/Parks District team has met and set the following goals.

2019 - 2020






Opening Day!


Community Support

We are successfully reaching out to our community, and our project is supported by a multitude of local organizations, businesses, politicians, and government bodies. Here are some of our supporters: 


The District and the Foundation are planning to fund the project with a combination of private and public funding sources.

Goals Met:

Short term funding objectives for first quarter 2023:

Like other public aquatic facilities in Washington State, funding for construction, ongoing operations, and maintenance will require South Whidbey Parks and Aquatics Foundation and South Whidbey Parks and Recreation District to secure funds from a combination of public and private sources.

Stay tuned for more information about our fundraising efforts.

Why Swim?

Health Benefits

Swimming is the fourth most popular sports activity in the United States and a good way to get regular aerobic physical activity (1). It has been called the perfect exercise. After all, you can get all of the benefits of an aerobic workout without the damaging impact on joints, and it can be done by all ages, from the very young to the very old. It is utilized by athletes to stay strong and keep fit when recovering from injury. It improves muscle definition and strength, builds up bone mass (2, 3), helps you stay flexible, reduces inflammation (4, 5), reduces stress and depression (6, 7), and can lengthen your life (8, 9). Water-based exercise can help people with chronic diseases (4, 10), and can benefit older adults by improving the quality of life and decreasing disability (11).

A Life Saving Skill

On Whidbey Island we are surrounded by water. Swimming is not just a recreational activity, it is also a life saving skill. For children, knowing how to swim reduces the likelihood of drowning by a whopping 88%.