City officials discuss future of Potawatomi Pool
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) – South Bend parks officials are considering not repairing the Potawatomi Pool, but rather replacing it as part of a larger plan for the park.
The pool was closed last summer as the 67 year old equipment needed extensive repairs.
Specialists have studied the swimming pool and found that the terrace is in poor condition; some finishes age; the swimming pool loses 14,000 gallons of water a day; piping is compromised; and there is deteriorating concrete and several cracks.
“So we fully understand what parts and parts are out of date. What parts and parts need to be totally replaced and redone…the pool has reached its end of life,” said Aaron Perri, Executive Director of Venues Parks & Arts.
The cast iron piping should be replaced to get a few more years out of the pool.
This short-term plan would cost $2 million.
The board, however, is considering a $6 million long-term plan.
“Do we want an eight lap Olympic swimming pool? Do we want a smaller product?… And that gives us an opportunity. An opportunity to study city-wide water sports and understand what the waterscape is like not only at Potawatomi Park, but also at Kennedy Park, where we have a water playground. At the YMCA where we lost a pool as a community a few years ago…” Perri said.
Perri said they will be working on a master plan and looking at ways to invest in the next evolution of Potawatomi Park.
“Potawatomi Park as a whole deserves a master planning process. We know that certain elements of Potawatomi Park are difficult in terms of parking and traffic patterns and the veranda,” Perri said.
They ask the community for patience.
“While the pool is closed, we will have to rely on some of our partners and get creative as a community. We are already discussing with the schools how maybe we can access or share some of the pool resources during this downtime as well,” Perri said.
The council will have further meetings on this subject after the new year.
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