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Proposed $1.7M Sunset Pool improvements 'worth investing in'

Published: Thursday, May 1, 2014 3:16 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, July 29, 2014 9:53 p.m. CDT

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GLEN ELLYN – While the hot aquatic topic in Glen Ellyn has been the potential new indoor pool at the Ackerman Sports and Fitness Center, the Glen Ellyn Park District Board of Commissioners also recently received information about extending the life of its current pool.

A report presented to the board April 15 indicates the village’s decades-old but popular Sunset Pool can serve the community for another generation with the implementation of $1.7 million in select improvements.

The information came from Stu Isaac, president of the Isaac Sports Group, who recently consulted with the district on the indoor pool project.

“We know this is a well-loved, very well-used facility in Glen Ellyn,” he said. “Essentially, the bottom line is, is it worth investing? And if we invest in it, will it continue to serve the community?’”

By making certain changes such as improving energy-efficiency and program enhancements, the district can ensure the pool’s ability to continue serving local residents.

Isaac outlined a recommendation that included:

• Adding space by making the beach-style pool entry deeper and shorter

• High-efficiency filters and heaters

• Americans with Disabilities Act compliance

• Better chemical ventilation

• Installing family changing rooms

• Replacing waterslides

• Removing a sand play area

• Installing a new climbing wall.

Board President Jay Kinzler added the project’s expansion of programming could be a test for the possible indoor pool project.

All improvements would be up to the district to accept, deny and schedule, but by having a plan in place, it can make the best possible choices, Isaac said.

The board seemed generally in favor of much of the plan, especially knowing they had the added flexibility of cutting projects they weren’t interested in or couldn’t afford.

“I was actually pleasantly surprised to see that we’re ‘only’ talking about $1.7 million,” Vice President Gary Mayo said. “I wouldn’t have been shocked if you had come back and said we need to spend $5 million or $10 million to keep this thing going.”

Commissioner Richard Dunn said he was concerned with some of the major cost items and expected the public would be as well.

Kinzler asked staff and the district’s Citizen Finance Committee look over the recommendation and provide suggestions for implementation and funding at the board’s May strategy session.

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Estimated costs for select improvements

• Two family change rooms – $160,000

• Deepening shallow water for increased program space – $60,000

• Various operational changes, including new finish, pumps, heaters and filters – $495,000

• Removal and replacement of existing waterslides, towers and stairs – $280,000

• Demolition and replacement of existing play structure – $85,000

• Aquatic climbing wall – $30,000

• Removal of sand play area – $10,000

• Installation of new spray deck to replace sand play area – $310,000

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