Springville breaks ground for aquatic cen­ter

Serve Daily - - FRONT PAGE - By Christi C. Bab­bitt

Springville res­i­dents gath­ered Sept. 20 with gov­ern­ment and other of­fi­cials to for­mally break ground for the city’s an­tic­i­pated new aquatic cen­ter.

“We’re just very happy that we can get this built in Springville,” said Springville City Coun­cil­man Chris Creer to the crowd dur­ing the ground­break­ing cer­e­mony. “It’s a long time com­ing.”

The cen­ter will be built in an area at 1200 West and 700 South that is now open fields. It will be lo­cated next to the re­cently com­pleted Meadow Brook El­e­men­tary School and the new Smith’s Mar­ket­place that is cur­rently un­der con­struc­tion.

The aquatic cen­ter will re­place the cur­rent Springville city pool, which is more than 40 years old. Com­ple­tion of the new cen­ter is ex­pected by the end of 2017 or early 2018.

Springville Mayor Wil­ford W. Clyde said in his ad­dress dur­ing the cer­e­mony that seven years ago, when he asked his wife what she thought about him run­ning for mayor, she asked him to con­cen­trate on two is­sues: eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment and build­ing a re­cre­ation cen­ter in Springville. He had orig­i­nally planned to serve only one four-year term as mayor, but achiev­ing both th­ese goals took longer than an­tic­i­pated, Clyde said. Eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment took longer than ex­pected be­cause he took of­fice dur­ing an eco­nomic re­ces­sion.

With more busi­nesses now com­ing to town – Clyde hinted that there would be some an­nounce­ments soon – and the aquatic cen­ter un­der­way, he said he has ful­filled his wife’s re­quests. “I will be done next year,” he said.

Springville vot­ers ap­proved an $11 mil­lion bond is­sue in Novem­ber 2015 to fund con­struc­tion of the Springville Aquatic Cen­ter. At the time, pre­lim­i­nary plans in­di­cated the to­tal cost of the cen­ter would be $18 mil­lion. Nebo School District will con­trib­ute money to­ward build­ing the aquatic cen­ter project as stu­dents from the district’s high schools will use the fa­cil­ity for swim team prac­tices and ac­tiv­i­ties. The re­main­ing fund­ing will come from other sources.

The city has spent the time since the bond is­sue vote work­ing with ar­chi­tects to

de­sign the cen­ter.

“We’ve tried to build the best fa­cil­ity we can and stay within the bud­get that the ci­ti­zens have given us,” Clyde said.

The aquatic cen­ter will in­clude a multi- use pool with swim­ming lanes, a re­cre­ation pool with a cur­rent chan­nel, a tod­dler pool, a spa and a splash-down pool with two wa­ter slides. Also in­cluded in the de­sign is a gym­na­sium, a work­out area, a walk­ing track, sev­eral pro­gram rooms and a day care cen­ter.

Travis Pope, a 2013 grad­u­ate of Springville High School who par­tic­i­pated in the aquatic cen­ter ground­break­ing, swam with both the Springville Seals and SHS swim teams. Hav­ing ac­cess to a pool and par­tic­i­pat­ing on th­ese teams changed his life, he said, and helped him learn im­por­tant life lessons.

He said he is happy that a pool will con­tinue to be avail­able to lo­cal stu­dents. “I’m ex­cited for any kid that comes along that has the same op­por­tu­ni­ties I did,” Pope said, who now serves as as­sis­tant coach of the SHS swim team.

Ac­cord­ing to the Springville City web­site, ev­ery ef­fort will be made to keep the old city pool open un­til the new one is com­pleted. The old pool is lo­cated just west of Springville High School, and there are no plans yet for the prop­erty.

*** My dream is of a place and a time where Amer­ica will once again be seen as the last best hope of earth. - Abra­ham Lin­coln

Springville City of­fi­cials and mem­bers of the pub­lic of­fi­cially break ground for the new Springville Aquatic Cen­ter on Sept. 20.

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