The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

By Gwendolyne Honrud
The Courier 

Pool Limps Along

 

Georgie Kulczyk / The Courier

Structural damage is visible to the concrete of the Glasgow swimming pool in this 2016 photo. The pool has seen some repairs and paint since this photo was taken, but a lot of work is still needed.

How do you prioritize where to spend money and what to fix when it seems everything is in bad shape? That's the question Recreation Director Jory Casterline has to answer when dealing with the city pool. For the ten years he has been here, the pool has limped along, but he warns it's only a matter of time before an issue arises that can't be fixed, "a pool ender" as he says.

In discussing the current state of the city pool, he asserts the pump is probably the biggest issue, but adds that it is hard to single out any single one thing as his main concern when the pool in general is in rough shape. The facility is "limping along" along with the current pump, with the department hoping it will last until the new one that has been ordered arrives.

In addition to a new pump, the city has to deal with antiquated and outdated chlorine filters. Given how old the pool and equipment are, the filters can't be sent away to be fixed or cleaned. All repairs are being done here as best they can be done.

Beyond the equipment, the structure of the pool is failing. Drains are collapsed and don't drain correctly. The concrete is shifting under both the pool and the decks. Casterline also points out the pool house is showing its age: brick is falling off the building on the outside and the bathroom stalls are rusting out. While nothing can currently be done about the shifting concrete, the lifeguards are spending more time sweeping the decks and ridding the area of debris to at least protect swimmers from scraped toes.

Even though the structure and equipment are a constant concern for the city, Casterline reassures swimmers that beyond scraped toes on the deck, there are no health or safety concerns for swimmers. The pool has been cleared for operation by the state pool inspector.

A mechanical failure is the greatest threat to the continued operation of the pool. Casterline says for now, they are crossing their fingers and going day by day, but warns that luck won't hold out forever. Eventually, there will be a failure of some kind, whether mechanical or a broken chlorine pipe, that can't be fixed.

Casterline assures the public that his department and employees are putting a lot of time and effort into keeping the pool functioning, but is frustrated that the constant maintenance needs take time away from other areas and projects that need attention, such as Sullivan Park.

Though plans for a new pool are still being drawn up, Casterline can say definitively that no equipment from this pool will be salvaged to be used in a new facility. Even though a pump or other piece of equipment may be relatively new, the plan is for the new structure to be constructed of all new equipment, rather than try to incorporate in old and/or outdated pieces.

For now though, those old and outdated pieces will hopefully last through the season.

 

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