City counts down to re-open revitalized pool

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With summer fast-approaching, there’s a question on everyone’s lips when they bump into Kilgore City Manager Josh Selleck:

“Will the city pool be open in time?”

“Our target and our goal has been that it will be open for Memorial Day, our typical Splash Day,” he told council members Tuesday. “Assuming that the rain is limited to what we know is going to happy today, there is about a 90 percent chance that it will be open.”

After the completion of sandblasting Tuesday, the pool was scheduled for a wash-down Wednesday, one of the few times crews didn’t lament the recent wet weather.

“They’ve completed the electrical,” Selleck noted, with the installation of new lenses and color-changing LEDs pending. “One of the big expenses was restoring the light wells.

“We ended up going back to one of the original manufacturers of the lenses from when the pool was built in the 1930s.”

The revitalized pool will include a new patio platform on its rear side as well as numerous other improvements to the surrounding deck.

Notably, “Everything goes ADA, which was one of the big goals of this project.”

When complete, the pool’s surface will have a tougher texture after workers profiled it back to concrete, consequently etching the surface in the process. After sealing remaining cracks in the concrete, an epoxy will be applied to soften the feel of the surface.

“It will be smooth,” Selleck noted, “but there will be variation in the concrete where it was etched out.”

Meanwhile, the Lazy Splash Ranch on the corner of North Street and Wood is up-and-running. Come May 27, it will transition to an 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. summer schedule.

Importantly, Selleck said, the extensive repairs to the pool – stretching from Spring 2018 – have been at a substantially lower cost in-house.

The work has run an estimated $250,000. According to a pool manufacturer, Selleck told council members, replacing the amenity entirely (rather than revitalizing the historic attraction) would have cost about $1.5 million just for the bowl itself.

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