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Site of the future Eads Swimming Pool.

Town of Eads is 100% Committed to Completed Pool Project

By Raina Lucero

September 7, 2022

As the community may know, prior to the summer of 2019 the Town of Eads Public Works director Van Brown along with the Town of Eads Council members made the difficult decision to close the Eads Municipal Swimming Pool indefinitely, due to the unsafe conditions within the existing electrical and plumbing systems of the original pool.

Three-years, a failed city sales tax question, and a few new developments later, Town Clerk Robin Fox gave some insight on where the Town stands currently regarding the building of a new pool for the Town of Eads. Fox stated, “The construction of a new municipal swimming pool is the top priority for the Town Council and there are currently no other ongoing projects the town is working on that will take precedence over the development and construction of a new municipal swimming pool.”

The location of the new swimming pool has caused a bit of controversy but to put the debate to bed, the new pool will officially be located at the current empty lot on the corner of 14th and Goff Streets, which is directly across the street from the courthouse to the east and the city park to the south.

The original pool location has been considered to be too close to a truck route; in the past there has been concern from parents as well as lifeguards that out-of-town truck drivers and other travelers have occasionally been known to show up at the pool and appear to possibly only be there for nefarious reasons, thus making the lifeguards and parents uncomfortable with the situation. The idea of keeping the pool location closer to the central hub of the town will ensure more public exposure to the surroundings, thus helping to keep kids safe.

The original pool location, on the nearby outskirts of town, also caused environmental concerns such as an abundance of tumbleweeds and other debris to fall into the pool clogging the drainage as well as the filtration systems. Snakes also became an issue coming from the north fields and slithering into the pool house, into the mechanical room, as well as getting into the pool.

With the new location being across from a grain elevator, some have expressed concern that what is known as grain chaff, may get into the water and the filtration system. The builders of what will be the new pool, Carrother’s Constuction Company feel confident that the chaff, which floats atop the water will filter through the filtration system nicely and will require much less vacuuming by the pool staff.

Financially, it is a better option to have the new location due to regulations for the tear down and dig out of the old pool. There is a potential issue with asbestos which could cost the Town of Eads hundreds of thousands more dollars to tear the old out before putting the new in. The heaters for the old pool that were purchased just a year prior to its closing have been deemed in good functioning condition and will be moved to the new pool.

With the new pool being just across from the city park the added feature of outdoor bathrooms located on the pool building will serve as a much-needed amenity for those who frequent the park. Features that have been selected for the new pool are zero entry, water slide, in-water benches, mushroom fountain, diving boards as well as covered seating areas around the outside of the pool.

The new estimated cost for this pool is in the range of 2 million dollars. To offset the cost of the pool the Town of Eads has begun doing raffles to raise funds with all proceeds being deposited into the pool account at GN-Bank in Eads.

Fox tells us that there was $6,000 raised at the Maine Street Bash in ticket sales alone for the donated items to be raffled. Another raffle with donated items is underway and will be open until the week after the Kiowa County Fair. A list of raffle items and raffle tickets can be purchased at the Town Hall or at the Kiowa County Fair, where a table will be set up under the grandstands.

Eads High School students have also created a video posted on social media to express the need from their point of view for the new pool in hopes of generating donations. It’s called, “Why Eads Needs a Pool” and can be found on YouTube.

Anyone who would like to contribute to the Eads Pool Fund at GN-Bank should contact the bank directly at 719-438-5331 to inquire about donating. Also, if you donate $200 or more, you can donate directly to the Kiowa County Economic Development Foundation (KCEDF) and specify that you want your donation to be made to the Eads Pool Project. By sending your donation directly to KCEDF you will receive a 25% Colorado Tax Credit. KCEDF Director Cindy McLoud will assist donors with the tax credit paperwork and 100% of the donation goes to the pool fund. McLoud can be contacted at 719-438-2200.

Along with accepting donations and selling raffle tickets the Town of Eads has been in contact with the 15th Judicial District Attorney’s Office who now includes the Town of Eads Pool Project on the list of beneficiaries for any fines that are to be paid by those who have court ordered fines imposed upon them. The Town Council is also in the process of finishing the narrative writing for a GOCO Grant with the help of a GOCO representative and Director McLoud (KCEDF). At this time there has not been an amount decided upon to request for the GOCO Grant but that is something that will be decided prior to the due date coming soon in November of this year.

Fox stated that the GOCO representative likes the new location of the pool because they can tie the city park into the request for funds and this may help their chances of receiving grant money to build the pool.

In the event that GOCO chooses to not fund the Eads Swimming Pool project, Fox is confident that the Town Council plans to continue to move forward finding alternative methods of funding.

The Kiowa County Independent last reported that the Eads Town Council approved the payment of $80,000 to Carrother’s Construction Company in order to begin the process of building a new pool. According to the contract, some of the additional work that the $80,000 will pay for is:

Professional land survey of the site to determine existing topography, utilities, and dimensions.

Geotechnical investigation and report of selected site to determine subsurface conditions relating to design.

Adapt and customize selected facility design to reflect site specific requirements, local and state regulatory requirements and the Owner’s desired modifications.

Produce Construction Documents sealed by a Colorado registered Professional Engineer including plans and specifications sufficient to allow Carrother’s Construction Company to construct the complete facility.

Fox tells the Independent that Carrother’s is in the process of finishing another project and will then be moving to Eads to begin the work listed above. At this time there is no timeframe on how long it will take to complete the initial work detailed in the contract; however, Fox also stated, “Carrother’s has indicated that from the time construction begins to the time it is finished should be an estimated 8-months.”

With another summer coming to a close, the Eads community has now withstood the summer heat for 3 years without the Eads Municipal Swimming Pool. Three years of memories lost and experiences never to be had. Most who grew up in Eads have memories of learning to swim in the public pool, memories of their first dive or perhaps belly flop off the diving board, and the rush of adrenaline and excitement when someone yells “blackie” in the deep end. These experiences and traditions had remained unchanged and became core memories for so many from generation to generation. However, for the last 3 years, Eads’ youngest generation has not experienced these memories in their hometown pool, and sadly these first experiences will be made somewhere else, in someone else’s hometown.

However, if fundraising continues to go well, the Town of Eads will maintain their commitment to the pool project. Make your donation to this very worthy cause and maybe we will soon hear the excited squeals and laughter of children playing and swimming and growing—this time in downtown Eads.

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