Barretto Point Park

Early Bird Lap Swimming Comes to the Floating Pool

Thursday, July 24, 2008
No. 85

In addition to the breathtaking view of the Manhattan skyline and the unique swimming experience, there is yet another great reason to visit the one-of-a-kind Floating Pool at Barretto Point Park. South Bronx residents will now be able to take advantage of the Early Bird adult lap swim program at the Floating Pool every weekday between 7:00 a.m. and 8:30 a.m.

Beginning Monday, July 28, adults who arrive at the Floating Pool before 8:30 a.m. will have the opportunity for uninterrupted swimming with a focus on health and fitness. This is the 26th annual outdoor lap swim program, and participants who swim 25 miles or more over the summer will be awarded a free t-shirt and other great prizes. The program ends on August 29. For a complete listing for all pools participating in the lap swim program, visit

Also this summer at select outdoor pools, including the Floating Pool, Parks & Recreation will once again host the popular Learn to Swim program, in which free swim instruction is offered to toddlers (ages 1 ½ - 5) and children (ages 6 - 14) during three two-week sessions. The program, made possible by Parks’ partnerships with the City Parks Foundation and the American Red Cross, will operate from July 8 through August 29. The City will also offer outdoor swim team training at select pools throughout the five boroughs and host the culminating Eighth Annual Five Borough Championship swimming competition on August 9.

The Floating Pool features a seven-lane, 25-meter swimming pool; pool house; locker rooms with showers; bathrooms; a children’s spray shower; a gangplank leading to and from the barge; and other amenities. The 20,000 square foot facility is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The pool maximizes underused waterfront space and allows for a large new facility to open along the South Bronx waterfront without acquiring any new land.

To increase accessibility to the Floating Pool, there is a new, temporary MTA bus route servicing the Barretto Point Park area. The route will operate 7 days a week on a regular schedule, with a bus every half hour from 8:12 a.m. to 7:22 p.m. for southbound service and 8:30 a.m. to 7:42 p.m. for northbound service. Regular service will be provided until September 1, when the pool closes. The standard $2 fare will be collected and standard transfer policy will apply.

The Floating Pool, a project 20 years in the making, is the creation of Ann L. Buttenwieser, a leading urban and waterfront planner. Ms. Buttenwieser revived the idea of 15 floating baths that dotted the City’s coastline at the turn of the century and founded the Neptune Foundation, a not-for-profit organization which funded the design and construction of the Floating Pool. Ms. Buttenwieser collaborated with architect Jonathan Kirschenfeld, of Jonathan Kirschenfeld Associates, and naval architect Kent Merrill, of C.R. Cushing & Co., Inc., to design the Floating Pool. The barge was purchased from a New Orleans shipyard in 2004, and over the next two years it was converted into a self-sustaining floating pool in the Bollinger Shipyards in Amelia, Louisiana. After the project was completed, the Floating Pool arrived in New York City in 2006. The Floating Pool spent its inaugural summer last year at Brooklyn Bridge Park, drawing 72,000 visitors over the summer.

Park Information

Directions to Barretto Point Park

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