Kelly Slater to build world's largest wavepool in the Californian desert
Following several missteps and delays, the Kelly Slater Wave Company (KSWC) yesterday announced plans for the world's largest wavepool to be built at La Quinta, a suburb at the base of Coral Mountain in California's arid Coachella Valley.
Slater is teaming up with private real estate investment and development firm Meriwether Companies and Big Sky Wave Developments, founded by Michael B. Schwab, son of brokerage pioneer Charles Schwab.
“We chose to do this project because it allows us to further build on our technology and also because one of our founding partners, Michael Schwab, is heading up the group running the project,” Slater said in a statement.
“We’re excited to make another KSWaveCo design and I’m personally excited to create a new wave that will be a stand alone design that nowhere else in the world has. This can become the blueprint for new developments around waves and surf parks going forward and is in line with some of my original ideas from when we started this project. I can’t wait to get underway.”
Construction is expected to begin in early 2021 with the opening slated sometime in 2022, pending design and amended approval.
Josh Kerr, Shane Beschen, and Damien Hobgood are also building a wavepool just up the road, the DSRT SURF pool in Palm Springs will be powered by Wavegarden tech with the goal of a 2021 opening.
The KSWC wavepool will be part of a 400-acre site set at the base of Coral Mountain. The masterplanned community will include "a full-service resort, residential homes, a private club, multiple dining venues and adventure sport offerings".
The US$200 million complex will also have a 150-room hotel and up to 600 homes priced in the $1 million to $5 million range. Access to the pool will only be available to homeowners, hotel guests, plus members and their guests.
No details on wave size have yet been released, however it'll take 68 Million litres of water to fill the pool - reportedly using less water than a golf course.
Currently, there are more than fifty golf courses within twenty kilometres of the site, and over a hundred in the greater Palm Srings area, all irrigated by an underground aquifer.
Last year, a KSWC wavepool in Slater's home state of Florida was canned due to groundwater issues, similarly a proposal in Tokyo to host the 2020 Olympics was rebuffed by the IOC, while a project on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland has made little progress.