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Aquatics Study

The City of Lenexa is working to develop a plan for a sustainable aquatics system that serves our growing community into the future.

During the first phase of the Aquatics Study process, an outside consultant evaluated Lenexa’s aging outdoor pool facilities. The second phase engaged the public in learning about our pools and explored community preferences and priorities for aquatics offerings going forward.

The combined results from the two phases of study will help City leadership make informed decisions about future aquatics investments in Lenexa. As funding becomes available and proposals are considered, aquatics study findings will provide a framework for determining what locations and types of aquatics facilities would best meet the needs of Lenexa as a whole.

Lenexa will begin a process to update its Parks and Recreation Master Plan at a future date. Aquatics study results will help shape this broader vision to ensure our parks, facilities and program offerings continue to meet the needs of residents in the years ahead. 

Phase I: Evaluating Lenexa’s current aquatics facilities

In 2018, Lenexa Parks & Recreation commissioned a study of the city’s aquatics facilities and their ability to serve community needs in a fiscally responsible way. Lenexa-based consultant Waters Edge Aquatic Design was hired to evaluate facility conditions, identify modernization strategies, predict the demand for aquatics facilities, and estimate expenses for various capital improvement options. The assessment focused largely on the outdoor pools: Ad AstraIndian Trails and Flat Rock Creek. The Lenexa City Council accepted the final report from this phase of the study in July 2019.

Major findings

  • Lenexa’s existing outdoor pools are large and expensive to operate.

  • Pools are in close proximity to each other, and all are geographically located in the eastern third of the city (east of I-435).

  • Facilities have aged and lack modern amenities that attract attendance (only about 45,000 visits per year between all three outdoor pools).

  • High expenses and low revenue results in significant subsidy to operate outdoor pools.

Phase I: Lenexa Aquatics Study Final Report - July 2019 (PDF)

When considering changes to Lenexa’s outdoor aquatics facilities and programming, Waters Edge Aquatic Design advises that Lenexa add modern amenities; look for ways to serve the growing population including all areas of the city; and reduce the overall size of outdoor pool facilities to be more financially sustainable and responsible. For cost estimation purposes, the study presented a variety of scenarios the city could take when replacing facilities.

Phase II: Envisioning the future of Lenexa’s aquatics

Phase II of the Aquatics Study took place largely during 2020–2021 and focused on engaging the community about the future of aquatics in Lenexa. Consultant Water’s Edge Aquatic Design led the process. This phase provided educational information on current program offerings, staffing impacts, facility challenges and options for future growth. It sought public input through user group meetings, multiple surveys, an in-person open house and an online feedback form. The community was able to weigh in on priorities for aquatic investment and share feedback on desired pool features and activities. 


Above all, it is clear that aquatics is strongly supported and important to the community. Future investments should center on solutions that best serve the whole community.

One of the study’s central questions was whether the City of Lenexa should offer more small aquatics facilities with fewer amenities or fewer aquatics facilities with more amenities. No clear consensus emerged from public engagement efforts.

Based on key indicators from the public, the City of Lenexa and aquatics industry trends, Phase II of the study resulted in three recommendations:

  1. Reinvest in and renovate Indian Trails Aquatic Center with the goal of creating a regional-sized aquatic center with the right mix of amenities. This would allow for more efficient operations and maximize usage.

  2. Reduce the overall amount of water surface offered through the outdoor pools. Close Ad Astra Pool (after renovating Indian Trails Aquatic) and repurpose it as another recreational amenity. Maintain operation of Flat Rock Creek Pool for the duration of its useful life.

  3. As part of future park improvements or Parks and Recreation Master Plan updates, consider incorporating splash pad(s)/splash park(s). They could supplement water recreation opportunities and provide fully accessible water recreation amenities, especially for neighborhoods that would benefit most or are more remote.

Phase II: DRAFT Lenexa Aquatics Study Final Report - May 2021 (PDF)

Phase II: DRAFT Lenexa Aquatics Study Full Appendices - May 2021 (PDF)

Next steps

Lenexa’s governing body discussed the Aquatics Study Phase 2 preliminary report at a Committee of the Whole meeting on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. The governing body is expected to officially accept the study’s completion during a City Council meeting on June 15 at 7 p.m. Accepting the study means that the governing body understands the recommendations made by the consultant, but it does not bind them to implement those recommendations.

Decisions about future investments in aquatics facilities will be part of the five-year Capital Improvement Program process undertaken later in 2021.

Staff contact

Mandy Danler,, 913.477.7120.