City pays off pool, makes improvements

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Painting, repairs to be complete in time for summer

The Cassville swimming pool will soon be getting some needed attention that it has not had since it was built in 2001.

The funds to originally pay for the pool, at a cost of approximately $2.6 million, came from park and storm water sales tax, but were being completely consumed by the debt owed, leaving nothing for maintenance.

"We had debt services paying for the pool," said Steve Walensky, public works director for the city. "So we never had any real money to take care of things."

Now that the debt has been paid off, for the first time funds are available to provide some needed maintenance of the pool, after 15 summers of the facility providing families with summertime fun.

The pool's two, nearly two-story slides will receive a new gel coating and have its seams repaired; the pool shell will receive a new paint job and have chips and cracks repaired; and the pool will be receiving a portable lift, which can be moved around the pool, to help disabled users to get in and out of the water.

"Over time, the seams get out of kilter," Walensky said. "All the seams will get gel coated then painted. The other part is the pool itself needs to be painted. It has some cracks and chips.

"We had a stationary [lift] unit, but because of the dimensions of our pool, you're required to have two. This gives them flexibility to take the lifts anywhere in the pool. It's an aid for the disabled and a federal government requirement."

Quality Pools won the contract to repair and paint the swimming pool. For a cost of $48,390, they will repair the pool shell including cracks and chipping out bad areas, patch and caulk, prep pool including wet sand blast, acid wash, TSP wash and final rinse. They will also paint the entire shell, depth markers on coping and the face of the pool, and playground equipment. The pool's standard lights will be replaced with LED lights, and the bronze anchors will be replaced.

Repairs will be made in January, but painting cannot be completed until temperatures reach at least 50 degrees.

Safe Slide Restoration will give the slides a new gel coating on the interior at a cost of $33,200, and repair the fiberglass seams, at a cost of $28,800, for a total of $62,000.

The contractor will repair all minor structural repairs in the ride path, recaulk all seams, prepare and refinish the interior with a gel coat and lay non-skid at start tub. For the seams, they will permanently seal and fiberglass over 32 seams, prep and laminate seams with vinyl-ester resin and 1708 buyable cloth, fair seam with compatible 3M vinyl-ester fairing and apply premium gel coat to all seams.

The contractor In The Swim will install the Pal Portable Lift equipment, at a cost of $6,761.98.

Walensky said he continually tries to make improvements to the city's parks for the recreation and enjoyment of residents, and he presented plans to city council for approval in January.

"When I look at the park system in total, I set forth plans, and now with the money freed up from the debt services, I've got a lot more freedom to do things," he said. "I can't get approval to get funding until the new calendar budget year, and need time to get the contracts signed and work schedule."

Current projects underway to improve the city park includes renovating the tennis courts, basketball courts, adding pickle ball and frisbee disc golf, replacing dirt and adding bleachers to the ball fields and improve landscaping.

"The strategic plan has always been to add something new or improve existing items," Walensky said. "We also embarked on a turf management program because the grass itself in the city park has been neglected and chickweeds and dandelions have taken over. We've been fertilizing and seeding.

"I work closely with the YMCA for the soccer, baseball, Mighty Mites, coaches and other groups who are major users of our parks."

Walensky said the public is always welcome to submit their ideas and wishes to the city.

"We'd like residents' input at any given time," he said. "Input helps drive our capital improvements on things they'd like to see. That fuels the plan."

By summer, the pool and other projects should be complete.

"This summer is going to be great," Walensky said. "We want residents to enjoy the new components we've done and enjoy using our park system."

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