The city of Osaka plans to transform the Dotonbori Canal into the world’s largest outdoor swimming pool. According to the proposal, the city wants to insert a 40 by 2,625 foot pool into the center of the canal, and pump it full of purified city water. Located in the nightlife area of Shinsaibashi, the pool is slated to open in 2015.

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The Dotonburi Canal is already known for swimming-only by the occasional Hanshin Tiger fan, who are known to take a dip when the team wins a championship. The area has already undergone a massive rehabilitation, turning the disused waterfront into a sprawling boardwalk meant to attract local families. Cafes, bars, souvenir shops and food stalls have popped up along the once desolate canal, inviting visitors of all ages to walk the boardwalk.

The Dotonbori pool is thought to be the next step in revitalization, staking the district’s claim as a welcoming, family destination. The Dotonbori River Poolside Avenue firm was formed on April 1 to help the project move forward. The firm estimates the project at around $30 million, that they say will be raised privately. Once opened, the seasonal pool will cost around $10-15 for admission, and be open from June to September, with special programming offered throughout the season.

The pool plan has been met with mixed reviews, with most locals saying that the idea of swimming anywhere near the polluted canal seems incredulous. Only one rendering has been released to the public thus far, and the Dotonbori River Poolside Avenue firm believes once more information is released, it will gain public support.

Via Japan Times

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