Pool Layout Question

Coreman

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Feb 25, 2021
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Nashville, TN
Working on laying out a new pool build in Nashville, TN on an home that is currently being built. There are a few questions we are debating currently the thought is to put the shallow end at the bottom of the picture as that will be closest to the back of the house(which has a large back covered patio), but the thought/question came up should we flip it and put the shallow end towards the top as it might maximize the space around the pool house better? This puts the pool approximately 12' off the back of the house and 8' from the side of the cabana space. Any thoughts on this? The shallow end is planned to have a baja ledge about 4' long(steps will be incorporated into the shelf on one side), then 7' of shallow depth, then go to a 8' deep end. We are going to add a spa on the left side across from the pool house that will line up with the slider openings on the pool house and this will be a jump off space for the children(ours is almost 7). I should add the Pool House will have a large open air cabana, currently it is shown as all part of the pool house, but approximately 20x10 of that area closest to the pool is open air and contains a sit around bar. Any suggestions feedback and thanks in advance for your input!

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YippeeSkippy

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Hey there.... I personally would put the shallow end near the lounge chair end. This encourages chatting among folks on the chairs, Sahara shelf and on the steps in the pool. The folks lounging can also wallk in for a small cool down splash without having to walk entirely around the pool.

Maddie :flower:
 

Apsuhead

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I agree. I would put the shallow end by the loungers. People jumping in the deep end will splash everyone sitting in the loungers. I like how the equipment pad is hidden behind the pool house 👍
Plans look great, going to be a great setup 🤩
 

Dirk

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There's quite a discussion going on in another thread about pool depth vs water depth. Your plans seem to indicate an 8' deep-end and a 3' shallow-end. But those dimension appear to be marked from the bottom of the coping, not where the water level is going to be. So your 8' deep-end will not be 8' of water. Personally, I like a deep deep-end, so I'd want the full 8'. More importantly, your shallow-end water depth will be less than 3', and 3' is already really very shallow. The 2'6" to 2'8" water depth you might end up with is way too shallow. If you planned it that way for kids, I wouldn't. In five minutes your kids will be 6" taller, but you'll be stuck with a too-shallow shallow-end forever.

Either way, be sure to have a discussion with your PB about actual water depth. Make sure you and he are speaking the same language, and have water depth dimensions added to the contract, as well as the allowable margin of error. In other words, does a 3' water depth mean 3'? Or somewhere between 2.5' and 3.5'. Personally, I would insist on a very minimal margin of error, like ±1" or less. But some PBs think ±6" is acceptable!

Get it understood by all parties, get it in writing.

The shallow end should be closest to the house, especially if that is where you will most often sit and entertain. I think it's fine the way you have it. You could put a step at the end of the safety ledge (that would be at the top of the image) to facilitate getting in and out at that end, leading to the pool house.

If anything, I might flip the pool the other way (left to right), for a few reasons. That would put the spa in front of the pool house, which would make both more accessible to each other. Right now there is not enough of a walkway between spa and what looks to be a drop off. That would also put the main set of pool steps closer to the pool house. Also for lighting. You don't want any light in the back wall (top of pic), shining into the house, nor any on the left side, shining into the pool house. Most annoying. So all the lights need to go on the right wall. Which, as the pool is now, will be under the safety shelf, leaving it dark. If the safety shelf is on the other side, with the lights on the right side, the lights won't shine into the pool house or the main house or the spa, and they'll illuminate the safety shelf nicely.

And then I might rethink where the pool sits. I'd shove it up and to the left. I'd leave just a 4' walk around the back and left side, and increase the width between house and pool, and pool house and pool. Now, you've got 8' in back of the pool and 8' on the right side. That's not enough. A chaise is at least 6' long, mine are closer to 7'. Put in an 8' space, that leaves as little as a foot of walkway to get by them. That's not enough. A 6' table is even worse. When you pull the chairs out from under a table, a 6' table needs at least 12' to be able to navigate around it, probably more. Rather than centering the pool in the space, I would offset it to give you two more usable areas, rather than four somewhat inadequate ones.

Yah, you did ask! Then I would widen the steps between the veranda and the pool, for two reasons. That will be a major traffic area, and the stairway as is will be a choke point. Also, the shrubs on either side of the stairway will grow into a visual blockade between sitting on the veranda (or from inside the house) and the pool. You must maintain an unobstructed view of the bottom of the pool from the house and from where you will most likely sit (not only for safety but aesthetically, too). So wider stairs and a few less shrubs left and right will help with that. Or just plant small stuff or ground cover in those two areas.

I'll be back in a while to destroy the rest of your yard! 😈 Kidding!! I love all the landscaping you have planned. That's going to be awesome. Be sure to light it all up with garden lights. It'll be amazing...
 
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Dirk

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Couldn't sleep... or was I dreaming about your pool...
 
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setsailsoon

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The only thing I remember from Latin is "de gustibus non est disputandem" In matters of taste, there can be no disputes. No idea why but it always stuck; it applies a lot for pool stuff.
 

Coreman

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Feb 25, 2021
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Nashville, TN
First of all-thanks for all of the responses. A few quick comments/questions, we can not move the pool further back(towards the top) due to set back restrictions, the pool house is an existing detached garage that is getting renovated-so needless to say we are not able to move it either. With that said Dirk you brought up a number of great points, quick question, we had intended to have the spa top be elevated(12" or 18") to give the kids something to jump off of, if we moved it to the pool house side the concern was it might block the view of kids in the water from the pool house-any thoughts? I think were you moved the loungers is a spot that will end up being a very high traffic area due to the proximity to the pool house and the main house. The attached below does not show the full dimensions of the pool, but it does show it going to the "set back" line and how the pool house is currently drawn with the plans. Any other comments or input? Also anyone have any comments on adding a ledge all the way around the deep end? Toying with the idea, but I want to make sure it will not be a safety hazard for kids jumping into the pool and catching it on the way down? Thanks again.
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Dirk

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Yes, it's important not to obstruct the view of the bottom from where you'll be watching swimmers. I had assumed that would not be from inside the pool house, but of course if that is where you'll be hanging out then the raised spa would be an issue. I see it now, the cabana, so that'll be a primary hang out.

Too bad about the setback. Must be quite a large one...

My main critique was how the spa and the lounge chairs were impeding the "traffic flow" around the pool. So just be aware of that. I think a 3' path all the way around is minimum. 5' is better.

I've seen pools with the safety ledges you talk about, but more like yours, not all the way around. I've watched my three littles go from 0 to 6, plus their friends, and the need never arose. A hand on the coping seems to be enough, so I'd even question what you have now. I have a bench in the deep end, which I guess serves that purpose to some extent. Maybe just a bench in the deep end, with a step to make it easier to get out, is all you need.

I wouldn't put one under the spa, or the back wall. They shouldn't jump off the spa with a bench below. And a bench on the back wall will interfere with doing laps (turning around, especially kick turns).
 

bmoreswim

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I'll note that your chaise lounges can easily be set back 18" further so long as you don't have a wall of any kind on the edge of the concrete. Only the back legs of the chaise need to be on the concrete. With that placement your side tables will also still be good. That then nets you 18" more deck space to walk around the pool clear of the chaise's.

I'd probably keep the layout pretty much as is given your constraints. As Dirk said, shallow end should almost always be on the house side or entrance side of the pool. Your layout would have suggested it possibly being on the right with your cabana, but I see that's not an option.
 

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JJ_Tex

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I'll second the comment on the shallow end depth. 3' deep is an uncomfortable depth, and your entire shallow end is 3' deep. We have a friend who has a 3' shallow end and it is just awkward. You feel stupid standing there with half your body out of the water, its too deep to sit on your butt so you spend most of your time awkwardly kneeling in the shallow end.

My pool goes 3'8" to 6'. The kids go to the deep end and the adults hang out in the 4-4.5' area.
 
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Dirk

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A lot of folks like a 4' shallow end. I think 3.5' is the minimum, and that depth is not great for swimming laps in. You really need 4' for that. I agree with JJ, 3' is too shallow. If you want that for the kids, that won't pan out. In 5 minutes they'll grow that 6". My shallow end is 3.5, I wish it was 4.