Water Park Pools: Concrete Or Shotcrete?

When you need to add a pool to your water park, you have some important decisions to make before construction can begin. What shape does the pool need to be? What size and depth does the pool need to be? What materials should you use to build the pool? This last question is often the hardest for people who are unfamiliar with pool building, but it's a question that you'll need to answer before your pool construction can proceed. Here are a few of the pros and cons of two of the most popular choices, concrete and shotcrete.

Concrete Pools

Concrete is the material that is most commonly used in pool construction. This is a big benefit when it comes to pool construction, because it means that almost any contractor that you hire for your pool construction will be familiar with how to build a concrete pool. Concrete is also a good choice because it can create an extremely smooth surface that can be easily finished with plaster or epoxy paint. Concrete tends to create the most uniform pool floors. Also, concrete pools tend to be less expensive because the material is less difficult to work with.

Concrete does have some serious drawbacks, however. For a waterpark, one of the most important drawbacks is the limited shapes available for concrete pools. Depending on whether you're building a wave pool, a river-style pool, a kid's splash area, or something else, you might need some flexibility when it comes to the shape of your pool. Concrete pools are usually built using a method called cast-in-place that restricts the pool to a few limited shapes, like rectangles or squares, that are poured into forms.

Concrete pools are also often the least water-tight option. Because the concrete has to be poured, it needs to be very wet. The volume of water used in the concrete mixture leads to a need for more separation joints between each pool section. More joints mean more chances for a leak.

Shotcrete Pools

Shotcrete is really just a different formula of concrete. It requires less water and more cement in the mixture, and it's applied through the use of a pump, hose, and nozzle. The great advantage of shotcrete is the ability to create free-form pools rather than having to adhere to one rigid shape. Shotcrete pools are also more likely to be water-tight. Because they require less water in the mixture, they also require fewer joints, which means there are fewer chances for a leak.

The biggest drawback that you're likely to experience if you prefer a shotcrete pool is that many contractors are unfamiliar with using the material and with the application process. Shotcrete may also cost you more because of the expertise required to work with the material. If you know that you'll need a shotcrete pool, it's worth taking your time to find an experienced pool contractor.

A pool contractor with extensive experience in water park construction is your best bet. That way, you can be sure that your contractor understands the specific needs that you have for your pools.