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In Fast Company,  “Why NYC’s floating pool could change beach access for the entire state.”

“This policy did not exist two months ago. It’s super exciting in terms of public access to waters in New York City.” – Kara Meyer, Managing Director of +POOL

We’ve been waiting for you, +POOL. And well, it being summer with 90 degree heat in NYC, this is even cooler news…yes, pun intended

Needless to say it’s exciting to see that others agree.

This June 2024, Fast Company wrote a feature on +POOL and the investment by New York to support climate justice. Kara Meyer, +POOL’s Managing Director (and DSI thesis advisor) shared more about their efforts (and the fascinating history of NYC waterways and  swimming) in her Global Guest Lecture back in 2021.

From its early conception by Playlab’s Dong-Ping Wong, Archie Lee Coates IV, and Jeffrey Franklin (Archie and Jeff were also early DSI Thesis Advisors) to the pool’s remarkable evolution over a decade later, +POOL’s commitment to safe water access for the public and commitment to improving the environmental health of our waterways has always been a social innovation for climate justice, equity, and public health.

While the idea of a floating pool that filters its water is exciting on its own, what has been extraordinary is that +POOL has in its list of innovations: building regulation, advocating for public policies, defining what constitutes a “non-traditional beach”, technologies for gathering data, developing public programming including family swim classes, lifeguard training including wage recommendations, and student programs for assessing water. This is social design. And significantly, broader implications and changes – as well as investments from New York City and the State – mean that 2024 means that +POOL will partner in a pilot demonstration in the East River this year.

We are watching with full anticipation and support for +POOL with Kara’s leadership!




Kara Meyer is Managing Director of Friends of + POOL, a nonprofit that has been advocating for, and designing solutions to safe urban river swimming since 2015.

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