Monroe Street Pool Improvements

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The City of Carlsbad’s Monroe Street Pool is 41 years old and requires maintenance to remain operational and in compliance with current health and building codes.

In 2020, the city asked for public input on three options for improving and expanding the pool facility. After considering the three designs, their estimated costs, construction time needed, and other pros and cons, most community members who provided input favored the third option.

The City Council directed staff to place the Monroe Street Pool project on the November 2022 election ballot due to a city law that requires certain improvements to real property costing more than $1 million in city funds to be approved by voters. Voters approved the ballot measure.

On Feb. 14, 2023, the City Council approved an amendment to an agreement needed to develop construction plans for the renovation so an updated cost estimate can be completed.

The improvements proposed in Option 3 include:

  • Expansion of pool for larger swimming (50% more lanes) and water polo competitions
  • New 8-foot wall with gates along Monroe Street side to reduce sound from the pool
  • Larger pool deck with lockers
  • New exterior deck showers
  • Renovated locker rooms
  • More shade structures
  • More bleachers
  • Larger parking lot
  • New entrances including an outdoor option that will no longer require passing through the locker rooms
  • Reconfigured lobby, new first aid/administration offices and meeting/event room
  • Replacement of pool tile, plaster, piping, pool deck, drainage, pumps and filters
  • New building with mechanical room and family restrooms
  • Separate mechanical room access for service vehicles to reduce parking lot impacts for users
  • Replacement of existing solar water heating system and installation of rooftop solar panels to generate electricity
  • Enhancement of equipment storage space

Next steps

Staff will work to develop construction plans and obtain an updated cost estimate for the project and then return to City Council to seek further direction.


The ballot measure was needed because of Proposition H, a Carlsbad-specific law that requires voter approval for certain construction projects that cost more than $1 million in general city funds. Carlsbad voters passed this requirement in 1982 to have more direct oversight of city spending. 

General fund money comes mainly from Carlsbad’s share of sales tax, property tax and the tax visitors pay on stays in hotels and vacation rentals.

Public input

The city gathered input on the three options for the project through an online survey from Aug. 21 - Sept. 30, 2020 to help develop an approach for improving the Monroe Street Pool that will best reflect the community's needs, values and priorities. The public input gathered was provided to the City Council to assist in deciding how ultimately to proceed with this project.

View the public input summary report and appendices.

Project contact

Steven Stewart, Municipal Projects Manager

Sign up for updates

Want to stay updated on Monroe Street Pool improvements? Sign up for the Parks & Recreation: Monroe Street Pool Improvements list to receive email updates.