Water Recreation Facility Licenses



A health license is required for new water recreation facilities or whenever there is a change of ownership. The license must be renewed annually. Each Water Recreation Facility License Application(PDF, 358KB) must be accompanied by:

  • Electrical Inspection Form(PDF, 488KB) completed by a Master Electrician
  • Application-processing fee of $400 for year-round pools, $200 for seasonal pools, and $100 for each additional body of water. Payable via mail, phone, or in-person. Make checks payable to the Arlington County Treasurer.
  • Pre-opening inspection (new facilities and seasonal renewals). Call 703-228-7400 to schedule.

New Construction/Remodeling

Plan Review

The construction and operation of public swimming pools, spas, and interactive water features in Arlington County must comply with Chapter 24.1, Water Recreation Facilities Ordinance of the Arlington County Code.

Prior to construction, submit your plans and pay the $160 plan review fee. You may submit these online using the Permit Arlington Customer Portal. For more information, visit the Arlington County Permit Office’s website Commercial Building Permit Submission Requirements.

Public Pool Connections

New public or commercial pools are required to be connected to the sanitary sewer system. Contact Arlington County’s Department of Community Planning, Housing and Development, Inspection Services Division, at 703-228-3800 for information about swimming pool connections and requirements.

Safety Requirements for Owners/Operators

All swimming pools in Arlington County must have a certified lifeguard and person in charge on site during all hours of pool operation. The person in charge must be able to demonstrate their skills in the areas of water chemistry, hydraulics, microbiology, and other relevant areas related to the safe operation of public swimming pools and public spas.

Arlington County Code § 24.1-56 requires pool owners to report drownings, non-fatal drownings, and significant injuries to the Public Health Division during business hours at 703-228-7400. During evenings and weekends, call 703-558-2222 and ask for the Public Health Duty Officer. Submit the Drowning and Injury Report Form(PDF, 140KB).

Federal law (Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act) requires that public pools have compliant pool drain covers and secondary anti-entrapment systems installed. For more information, visit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's Pool and Spa Drain Covers website.

Safety Tips for Swimmers

There are steps you can take to prevent illness and injury at water recreation facilities. Below is a list of resources to help ensure you have a healthy swimming experience each and every time.

Properly Drain Pool and Spa Water

During the spring and fall, large amounts of water from swimming pools and spas are discharged into the storm drain system. The storm drain system in Arlington drains directly into its streams. Swimming pool and spa water can have devastating effects on the health of our streams if not disposed of properly. The chlorine, bromine, algaecides, cleaning chemicals and low oxygen levels can kill fish and other aquatic life in streams. Also, draining large volumes of water quickly can cause stream bank erosion.

More Information from the Department of Environmental Services