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New life for old pool site

Parks & Rec board discusses demolition of old pool and future for Riverside Park

By Amy H. Peterson - Staff Writer | Nov 12, 2020

The city of Estherville is preparing an RFP (request for proposals) for the site of the former Estherville municipal pool, in Riverside Park.

Among the details in the RFP, the contractor must provide all materials and equipment, nothing can be collapsed or burned on site, and the area must remain fenced in for safety purposes while the contractor is working at the site.

Most of the pool structure will be demolished, including the pool floor where the depth is four feet or less.

City administrator Penny Clayton said, “That way when we pour foundations for new play equipment in the area, we will get through to the soil.”

The Parks & Recreation Board discussed whether the contractor should be required to remove the entire pool floor in the baby pool area. The baby pool will become a sand feature play area for young children and their parents or caregivers. The pool edge will provide a border for the sand feature, and the fence will add an additional layer of safety.

Clayton said she may invite inspectors to the site to give their advice.

The contractor will completely remove the wall in the main pool area on the east, west, and south sides, but will leave part of the pool deck and the attached north wall of the former pool.

Those steps in the demolition process will reveal three drains at the end of the pool that must be plugged, Clayton said.

After that, the area is filled in — with dirt excavated from the site of the new pool site, at least in part — and then the area will be seeded.

In other business, the board reviewed the park foreman’s report. City workers have taken 36 trees from the city’s tree farm and planted them into the city’s parks. The parks crew was approved to rent equipment for $800 to complete what they could in a week.

A project with the Estherville Fire Department last week to burn prairie at the north end of Joe Hoye Park began in preparation for a new swing in the area. The new swing will allow users to overlook the West Fork of the Des Moines River. Clearing brush on the path to the river, would also allow walkers to enjoy a promenade to the river.

Parks maintenance workers previously built a dike along the drainage in Joe Hoye Park. Clayton said, “What happened is a tree went down and rerouted and created a problem down there so there’ just mush in the areas that used to be mowed.”

City workers also sided and painted the pump house at Thoreson Park, hauled in dirt to level out an area of Thoreson and replaced or added a total of six posts in Thorseon parking lot. The parks maintenance crew also painted the office floor in the new parks shop,

City electric workers installed a light post at South 14th Street Park for an ice rink, Clayton said the liner for the ice rink has arrived, and will be installed.

The city is also purchasing additional cameras for the tree dump site.

Board member Laurel Hash said walkers on the trail in Thoreson Park to the pavilion report dark areas as the sun sets earlier. Hash requested the possibility of additional lighting in that area.

The next meeting of the Estherville Parks & Recreation Board will be Monday, December 14, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers of city hall and over Zoom.