WEST POINT — Driving through West Point, you’ll see signs telling you who to vote for in the upcoming primary: the gubernatorial, district representative and county supervisor candidates.
Others mingle with the signs, reminding voters to say yes to a bond issue for a new swimming pool.
The bond issue, if passed in the primary on Tuesday, May 10, will authorize the West Point City Council to impose a half-percent increase in sales and use tax to offset costs of a new pool estimated at $6.4 million. . The city will also apply for grants.
The proposed pool will be built on the same site as the existing pool and will consist of two separate but connected pools. One of the proposed pools will include swimming lanes, diving boards and slides, similar in size to the existing pool. It is designed with swim lanes for competitive swimming, said West Point City Administrator and Superintendent of Utilities Tom Goulette.
With a number of competitions taking place at the West Point pool, they draw “a ton of people” to the community, he said. The second of the two pools will be designed for children.
“I think it’s of great importance to the community and an opportunity for various age groups,” Goulette said. “Hopefully we can keep people here to swim and attract others to the area.”
The current pool was built in 1985. The filter mechanism is starting to deteriorate, along with the bottom of the pool, Goulette said.
A new pool – with zero entry for disabled accessibility and a toddlers’ area, coupled with slides and lap lanes for older swimmers – is friendlier than the current pool, and how it works will be more profitable, he said.
If the bond issue is accepted, the existing pool will be open during the 2022 season while the design is complete and the bidding process takes place. Demolition of the current pool would take place in early to mid-August, with plans to open the new pool by the first week of June next year. That delay, Goulette said, may be driven by supply chain issues. The plan includes the renovation of existing public baths.
In the event that the bond issue does not go through, decisions will have to be made about the future of the existing pool, Goulette said.
“I hope citizens will realize that we need a new pool,” said West Point Mayor Bruce Schlecht.
The West Point Park Board of Trustees, a committee of seven volunteers, prioritized the pool during an assessment in 2020. Because the matter is about to be voted on, the committee pushed hard, said Schlecht, to promote the bond issue, by placing signs throughout the city. and radio announcements.
“They did a great job,” Schlecht said. “Now it’s in the hands of the citizens of West Point.”