A public forum on the proposed design for a new Pleasantville municipal pool last Thursday provided suggestions to alter the facility’s design, and questions were posed regarding cost, timeline and physical layout.
Pleasantville Pool Task Force Chair Troy Tassier said he and the other task force members worked to design a pool that would meet the needs of the community based on a survey of about 1,000 responses.
“We wanted options for a sustainable future for the pool,” Tassier said.
The new pool will measure 11,017 square feet, with an estimated price tag of $3 million. It will be funded by a bond and what the board has described as “modestly increased membership fees.” No approximate date was given for when a bond resolution might be passed. The project is subject to a permissive referendum.
The plan is to have a new pool completed for the 2023 swim season.
“Is the project timeline realistic and is the budget overly optimistic?” asked former village trustee Jonathan Cunningham. “Is it relative to what the boots on the ground of what other communities are experiencing?”
Pool designer and engineer Steve Rimkunas of Rimkunas Engineering said the schedule leading up to the pool’s completion in two years was realistic. He spelled out the process of applying for county approvals and permits, going out to bid and hiring a contractor by next summer.
After the pool closes on Labor Day, there will be a push to obtain necessary permits by April 2022 and accelerate the schedule to go out to bid earlier, Rimkunas said.
“This will give contractors an equal chance to bid. Communities need a pool and it’s costly not to have it open on schedule,” he said.
Cunningham also asked about the difficulties getting parts and materials and if the estimated cost reflects fluctuating prices. Rimkunas said his company hired an outside cost-estimating service.
“I expect they are aware of any shortages,” Rimkunas said. “Also, getting pumps, filters, chemicals and feeders are not a problem. By 2022 we do not expect to have difficulty ordering parts and I expect the supply line and prices to stabilize.”
Obtaining a contractor since the onset of the pandemic has been problematic for many local municipal projects. Contractors have generally been unavailable, an issue that was raised at previous meetings for other village projects.
Rimkunas assured residents and officials that the pool project would attract bids from contractors.
“This is considered a large pool project and there are four or five good contractors who I know,” he said. “This is a project they all really want.”
Other questions centered on functionality of the pool, including depth, lap lanes, the kiddie pool and slides. The 75-foot lap lanes would start at a depth of five feet and continue to 11 feet deep. Six of the lap lanes have starting blocks for swim competitions and lap lane ropes can be removed for recreational swimming. It can also be used for water polo, Rimkunas explained.
The pool design offers the option of a diving board, and if the community eventually choses one, this may necessitate hiring an additional lifeguard.
A proposed zero entry would slightly shrink the size of the pool, Tassier said.
Zero entry, a gradual slope into the pool that is ADA compliant, benefits elderly and beginner swimmers. A ramp alternative wasn’t aesthetically pleasing, said task force member Jim Kennedy.
Rimkunas said his company could design a facility that provides more shade in areas closer to the basketball court and contain more deck space. When asked if the kiddie pool could be bordered by grass instead of concrete, Rimkunas said a grassy area can be explored.
Another resident asked for more space around the kiddie pool for kids and families to sit.
“Eventually, down the road, a bond resolution will be put in front of the Village Board,” said Mayor Peter Scherer. “We are still fielding comments from people and following up on the suggestions and incorporating changes we heard from the public forum.”
Scherer also said funds from other village revenue sources could determine the size of the bond. The village may consider bundling other projects into the same bond, he said.
“We have a lot of support (for the new pool) and nobody wants to spend a dime more than we have to,” Scherer said.
Kennedy, who early in the forum provided a brief history of the pool and showed a 1975 picture of a newly-renovated pool with then-Pleasantville Mayor Walter Kanwisher, told Scherer he has the opportunity to help the village realize the facility’s newest incarnation.
“If we’re lucky, you, Mr. Mayor, may preside over the new pool in 2023,” Kennedy said.
The village is still accepting comments and suggestions. Residents may view pool renderings at https://www.pleasantville-ny.gov/projects-initiatives/pages/proposed-pool-reconstruction-project. Suggestions and comments can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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