Queens has made the shortlist of places being considered for a project to build a floating pool on a city river. NY1's Ruschell Boone filed the following report.
The East River is beautiful to look at, but would you wade into this water? Some say no, but Jeffrey Franklin has a vision and this is what it looks like. The +POOL is designed to filter the river water to make it swimmable, and it could end up at Hallets Point.
"Right now, it looks like one of the ideal sites around the city," Franklin said.
Testing on the water began Thursday for the Olympic-size pool that would include a kids, sports, and lounge area. Ten sites are being considered.
"We're looking all around the city, so from here in Queens over to to Brooklyn at Domino to Governors Island, Staten Island, Hudson River Park," Franklin said. "So just kind of pretty much all around the city."
Franklin and three friends came up with the idea a few years ago.
"One day, got together, Don said, 'I've got this crazy idea. Do you guys want to talk about it?'" Franklin said. "We met at a coffee shop, and then from there, we just decided it's something we have to do."
They dreamed of making the city's rivers swimmable, but making that a reality has not been easy.
One of the biggest hurdles was developing a filtration system that would hold up in river conditions without using chemicals. Franklin said they were able to do that last summer.
"After four months, we got the combinations down to what they need to be for the filtration materials, and even on the worst days, when the rains had just come and the water quality was at its worst, we were able to get rid of all the bacteria and get it down to a swimmable quality," Franklin said.
They're now looking to pick a site for the $15 million pool by the end of the year.
"Right now, we're fundraising through a nonprofit that we started in March called Friends of +POOL. That was established to build and maintain this first +POOL," Franklin said. "So we're raising money through events, and then we're also selling tiles so people can get their name on a tile on the pool when it's built."
The goal is to build it within the next four years.
To find out more about the project, go to pluspool.org.