Marshall Center pool to reopen Aug. 21

By Will Campbell, Columbian staff writer



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Marshall Center staff are wrapping up renovations for the community pool in time for the tail end of the long, hot summer.

Andy Meade, director of the Marshall Center, said he’s anxious to reopen the pool on Aug. 21. The pool has been closed since December.

The renovation brought in state-of-the-art water cleaning systems and new flooring around the pool, but also removed the kiddie pool.

“For most users, they’re not going to see significant changes but they’ll see a much more modern pool,” Meade said.

The project costs an estimated $2.8 million.

Staff at the Marshall Center, 1009 E. McLoughlin Blvd., had planned to open the pool in June, but unexpected problems with piping and the concrete surface caused a delay until this month.

Workers filled the pool last week, and now the water is being conditioned with the new ultraviolet light cleaning system.

The new system also uses sand filters, carbon dioxide and chlorine.

James Fields, aquatics director, said the new system has many benefits like easier operation, which will lead to lower staffing costs and less energy consumption.

The lining, or deck, around the pool before the renovation was “antiquated” tiling, Meade said, and stagnant water would puddle. The renovation fixes that with a new drainage system and concrete deck.

Workers also built three unisex changing rooms.

Meade said he hopes to install a spa where the kiddie pool once was, but there are no current plans.

Meade, who has been with the Vancouver Parks Department for 14 years, said the renovation is the largest in the pool’s 50-year history, and he hopes the pool will serve the community for another 50 years and beyond. He said he hopes to have a grand opening later.

The pool features racing lanes, and gets 9 feet deep in one end, where a yellow water slide entertains those looking for a thrill. The pool holds 200,000 gallons of water.

The Vancouver Swim Club trains there, and members are among the estimated 500 people who use the pool every week, according to Meade.

The Marshall Center will start scheduling swimming lessons shortly after the Aug. 21 opening.

During the hot summer days, Meade said people would show up with swimsuits hoping to swim, but staff had to turn them away because of the renovations.

“This is certainly a beloved pool,” Meade said.