Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center

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Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center opened in the fall of 2010 and is operated by the Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department. The facility has been closed several times over the years for repairs to its heating and cooling system. The structure is part of the campus at Buford Middle School. The initial cost was $11.2 million, but the city has spent over $2 million on repairs since it opened. [1]The facility is closed until at least spring 2022. [2] [3]

The 27,290 square foot center is a pool and recreation facility in the Buford Middle School campus opened in the fall of 2010. [4]. [5]

The facility was designed by Bargmann Hendrie + Archetype Inc. with assistance from Train and Partners. [6]

In 2012, 70,344 people used the facility. [7]


Air quality issues with the facility arose soon after it opened. The pool was closed for several weeks while new air exhaust systems were installed at a cost of $342,000. [1]

The pool closed for a time in April 2019 for repairs. [8]

Before the pandemic, the city announced the center would be closed for the summer of 2020 for repairs that cost at least $1.8 million. [9] [10] [11]


Adult city residents initially paid $8 for a daily visit, $170 for a multi-visit pass, $37 for an individual monthly access pass or $370 for an annual pass. For a non-resident, those costs are $11, $247, $49 and $490, respectively. A city family of four can pay $88 to have a monthly access pass or $880 for an annual one; and a non-city family of four would be charged $118 for a monthly pass or $1,180 for an annual pass[5].


  • Two Indoor Pools (one competitive pool and one leisure pool)
  • Two Indoor Water Slides
  • In-Water Play Structure
  • Lazy River
  • Fitness Area with Cardio & Strength Training Equipment

LEED certification

The U.S. Green Building Council has awarded the Smith Aquatic Center a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification at the platinum level. That is the highest level offered by the organization. Construction waste did not end up in a landfill. Windows provide daylight to 98% of the building, reducing the need for lighting. Ultra-violet lights are used in conjunction with a CO2 water treatment system to reduce the need for chemicals. A solar-powered system heats up water for internal use. [12]

The trade paper Athletic Business Magazine named Smith as a 2011 Facility of Merit, [13]


Coordinates:Erioll world.svg.png 38°01′36″N 78°29′52″W / 38.026668°N 78.497795°W / 38.026668; -78.497795


  1. 1.0 1.1 Web. Problems at relatively new Smith pool persist, Chris Suarez, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, August 23, 2015, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  2. Web. January 4, 2022: Winter storm knocks power out for thousands, strands motorists on I-95; Pfizer booster approved for those aged 12 to 15, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Community Engagement, Town Crier Productions, January 4, 2022, retrieved January 4, 2022.
  3. Web. Further delays for Smith Aquatic Center, Sean Tubbs, News Article, Town Crier Productions, January 4, 2022, retrieved January 7, 2022.
  4. Web. Charlottesville - Smith Aquatic and Fitness Center, City of Charlottesville, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Web. Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center set to make splash, Rachana Dixit, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, October 19, 2010, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  6. Web. 2011 Facility of Merit Winner: Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center, Buford Middle School, Athletic Business Magazine, October 11, 2011, retrieved October 17, 2011.
  7. Web. Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Update for City Council, May 2013, Brian Daly, City of Charlottesville, retrieved May 10, 2013.
  8. Web. Smith recreation pool closes for repairs, Daily Progress Staff, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, April 24, 2019, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  9. Web. Smith Aquatic Center to close for HVAC project, Daily Progress Staff, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, March 4, 2020, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  10. Web. Charlottesville’s Smith Aquatic Center may close for renovations over the summer, Lottye Lockhart, News Article, WVIR NBC29, March 4, 2020, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  11. Web. [ Smith Center to close for renovation work], News Article, retrieved September 15, 2021.
  12. Web. Smith Aquatic Center Becomes Platinum LEED Certified, Ric Barrick, City of Charlottesville, October 4, 2011, retrieved October 6, 2011.
  13. Web. City's Smith center honored, Daily Progress Staff Reports, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, October 15, 2011, retrieved October 17, 2011.

External links

Official site