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Estherville Parks and Rec Board New life for old pool?

City of Estherville exploring options for temporary repairs on historic city pool

October 10, 2018
Amy H. Peterson - Staff Writer (apeterson@esthervillenews.net) , Estherville News

There's nothing yet set in stone, concrete or cement, but the city of Estherville is contacting pool repair companies to look at what it would take to seal the cracks, replace the filters, and otherwise allow the existing pool at Riverside Park to serve summer swimmers for another season or two. Complications have pushed back the timeline for the proposed new municipal pool. The latest holdup is the fact that a land swap north of Thoreson Park will not be financially viable due to the cost per acre quoted by the landowner.

"The cost per acre is more than the current price of area farmland, which is not uncommon when procuring land for development," city administrator Penny Clayton said. While the Parks & Rec board at its Monday evening meeting acknowledged it would be good to have that land for the new pool and for additional parking at the ballfields, this delay may have pushed the pool project back nearly to square one.

"We're not at square one, because the pool committee put in a lot of work to create a viable and fun pool design, and the community weighed in," Clayton said.

Article Photos

Clayton said the pool committee will begin meeting again, and may reach out for more community input.

"We didn't do it this year because it was so wet and flooded, and by the time we could get it done, we'd be into July," Clayton said.

Clayton said the goal is to get the work slated for next spring in hopes of getting it fixed after winter and make the pool usable for one or two more seasons.

"We will get more public input. We hope, for any outdoor location, that Central Bi-Products will take care of its odor issue," Clayton said.

Odor from the rendering plant have permeated local outdoor activities through this summer and fall. The plant issued a letter Oct. 1 outlining the steps they are taking to improve the situation.

The city's partnership with the Regional Wellness Center (RWC) resulted in about 20 percent of the usual number of swimmers through the season.

"This was helpful in demonstrating that the public wants an outdoor pool," Clayton said.

Potential city

campground discussed

In other business, the board discussed plans for a new city campground on South First Street on land across from the VFW on the riverfront.

Neither of the current proposed drawings exactly fits the goals of the campground.

"The sites need to be leveled, and we are going with the topography of the land instead of against it. We will have wide RV spaces because not all drivers are created equal," Clayton said.

The board also discussed public art at Spurgin Park. Clayton said a monetary donation is yet to come in for a sculpture at the future dog park. Other sculptures have been proposed for various locations, but nothing is going forward specifically at this time, Clayton said.

The board also announced a proposed new ice skating rink. South 14th Street Park has a ground depression that could be pre-populated with water for a skating and hockey rink.

Maintenance supervisor Roger Hash said the main task to make this happen is running electricity.

"We need one pole for lights, and will run water directly instead of using the hydrant on the other side," Hash said.

The other issue is to move the warming house, Hash said.

The board also reviewed the Lights on Afterschool annual event that took place last month.

Clayton said, "I wanted us to review whether it's the best use of staff time or if we should do something different."

This year's program, which took place on a bad weather day, had 20 in attendance, compared with last year's 80 kids.

The next meeting of the Estherville Parks and Rec Board will be Tuesday, Nov. 6 at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers of city hall.

 
 
 

 

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