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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Demolition of pool approved

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Demolition of the tennis courts at Gillette Park and removal of fencing marks the beginning of a large scale project to upgrade Gillette Park and build an Aquatic Center.
(Photo by Ken Ross)
There will be no swimming at the Cherokee Municipal Pool this summer but hopefully, a new aquatic center will open in its place in 2007.

At the Cherokee City Council meeting on Tuesday, the council gave the green light to proceeding with demolition on the pool. Bids are expected to be accepted this spring on the construction of the pool during the summer.

Even if demolition was not going to take place this spring, equipment would need replaced before the pool could open. The nearly 50 year old pool has outlived its effective usefulness.

Ron Strickland, city administrator, said that the city is about $600,000 now from the estimated $3.6 million cost of the entire Aquatic Center/Gillette Park project. He noted that much of what has been pledged is over a five-year period so that another bond might need to be passed to pay contractors.

It was speculated that park improvements might be delayed while priority is given to the aquatic center.

Strickland noted at the Tuesday meeting that a Wednesday Aquatic Center/Gillette Park committee meeting was scheduled at which the final details of the project will be worked out.

Concept drawings and specifications will then be created and brought back to the city council.

The city has bonded for $400,000 toward the project on top of $100,000 designated earlier from hotel/motel tax revenue. A state grant of $400,000 of Iowa Values funds was awarded to the project. The county board of supervisors approved $50,000 in funds.

The remainder of the money that has been donated or pledged has been from businesses and individuals.

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