POINT PLEASANT — Despite summer feeling a long way off at the moment, Point Pleasant City Council is focusing on placing a spray park somewhere in the city.
As Mayor Brian Billings and members of the city’s recreation committee have delved deeper into financing the project, the original idea of placing the park on the site of the old Harmon Pool isn’t a cost effective one, according to the discussion at Monday’s regular monthly meeting of city council.
Billings and Councilman Bob Rulen discussed recent findings which could change the possible location of the spray park from the pool site to Krodel Park. Billings said the area directly behind the clubhouse, next to the playground at Krodel, would be an ideal location. Available parking and restroom facilities are also nearby and a park manager is on site. Spray parks are operated by motion sensors and do not require lifeguards. The motion sensors would activate the water when it is in use.
For months now, city officials felt utilizing the existing facility at Harmon Park might be the way to go, but upon more due diligence, felt the cost to fill in the pool and perform demolition work would cost more than anticipated. Rulen received a price quote on the correct material that would be required to fill in the pool — the original plan was to build the spray park on top of the pool. He also looked into other demolition costs associated with dismantling the pool and the actual process to fill it in, which takes more time than anticipated to allow for settling. In all, Rulen told council it may cost around $100,000 just to correctly remove the pool’s steel liner and fill in the area.
The space at Krodel is currently not being utilized and it’s flat land on which to build the spray park and a building to house the pump and other plumbing materials. No demolition work will be required. This would bring more recreational activities to the park which already attracts many visitors, especially in the warmer months. Rulen also suggested filling the Harmon Pool eventually and taking down the fence as a way to reclaim the property and possibly offer it for use to those involved in little league activities which take place at Harmon Park.
Billings asked for a special meeting of the recreation committee this Thursday to have a review of the findings presented by he and Rulen and to get the “go ahead” to move the spray park idea to Krodel. Billings said he wants to pursue grants as soon as possible to finance the project.
Both Billings and Rulen agreed that if city wants this as an option for this summer, it needs to act now.
Harmon Park Pool was closed due to rising maintenance costs and water leaks, combined with decreasing attendance.
Reach Beth Sergent at [email protected] or on Twitter @BSergentWrites.