Design for Innovation


Interview with Bob Wandel

Grandview, in 1977, had the reputation of being very conservative to the point of changing things only minimally, or so I’m told. The design behind the Grandview Pool was the idea of community, that everybody could find their place. The idea to create this pool came naturally because it was space that would go to waste. It was a privately owned swimming pool that was going out of business because the owner was using the space to bottle and sell the well water. He was also using that water to feed the pool. The water was very cold. After doing a master plan for a recreation center to which Grandview rejected, Bob Wandel managed to talk the recreation director into buying this private swimming pool. “It made sense to buy that swimming pool and not let it go away. I told him the city should buy it and display it,” Bob said.

They had talks about having a concession stand to support the income of the pool. “You’d make a lot of money just off of hot dogs and chips,” he said. “They didn’t believe us, so we had to do some convincing. We worked hard at that.” 

Most of the design was directed toward family and the idea of bringing children to come spend time together in addition to the specific area for diving. The idea of having competitions at the pool inspired an L shape design. Outside of the water, there were three components. There was a basketball court component. “You know, for the jocks who came to show off. Remember that?” Bob asked me and laughed. Then there was an extensive lawn component with seating directed toward family. And the final component was the concession area, the dwelling place for the teens.

1977 Pop Culture Facts

We lost two music greats in 1977: Bing Crosby and Elvis. I’m willing to bet it made people emotional enough to eat their feelings, but that’s no reason to fret because Slim Fast hit the shelves to get those beach bods ready. EPT was released so pregnancy was detected earlier, which is… important? Important. Apple gave us the Apple II and Star Wars opened in theaters. The force was strong with that film because it surpassed Jaws as the highest grossing film… until later on. In broader news of the US, Jimmy Carter was elected president.

But also, you guys, the Columbus Clippers became a team.