Aquatic Center looks doubtful for summer season

Signage coming for City Beach, Splash Pads

by Marianne Gasaway

No decision has been made, but City Administrator Scott Flory told the City Council Monday “it certainly doesn’t look good” for the opening of the city’s Aquatic Center this summer.

Flory said the city will hold off from making a determination about the pool until the governor makes an announcement about restrictions which are currently in place for such facilities.

“Obviously the governor’s proclamation prohibits splash pads, aquatic centers, those kinds of things from being open through the 27th. So we’re in a difficult scenario there. Staffing becomes a critical thing for us. We don’t know what’s going to happen come the 28th, whether or not that proclamation would be extended or not.”

Even if the restriction against pools is lifted May 27, Flory said it would be mid-June, at the earliest, the Aquatic Center could open.  And if capacity was limited to 50 percent, like it has been for restaurants, the local pool would have very limited use.

“Pool capacity is 300, so half would be 150 and with social distancing being factored in that would leave us with about 75 people.  We would need to take a look at the cost of operating and with the strict cleaning that would be needed, it is very unlikely some features would be open for use.

Staffing is also a big question, as high school and college students who typically fill the positions may choose not to wait to see if the pool will be open.  A shortened season may also be a deterrent.

City Beach remains open and sign-

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