What’s What in Aquatics?

August 7, 2006 at 1:19 pm 9 comments

Mt. Lebanon is considering building an outdoor aquatic center. An aquatic center is different from a competitive pool, although it would include a competitive element. And it is not a water park, although it could have some features found in water parks. We want to know what you would like to see in an aquatic center. But how do you know what you want, if you haven’t seen any of the state-or-the-art facilities that have been built around the country in recent years. What if you don’t know the difference between an aquatic center, a competitive pool, a leisure pool, a therapy pool or a water park? If you want to start dreaming, check out the new Aquatics International link at the right, which showcases of some of the top water facilities for 2005. Maybe we can’t have all the good stuff, but we probably can have some of it!

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Got a Question? Take a Good Look at Our Swim Center—and Others

9 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Steve R.  |  August 9, 2006 at 12:57 pm

    Waterpark – aquatic center – you name it. It all describes something that is not, should not, be a municipal function. If there is a demand for such a facitility, let tax generating private interests pursue it.

    Reply
  • 2. Carolyn  |  August 9, 2006 at 1:55 pm

    The Ohio waterplex is ridiculous. All we need is a lap pool/area for swim team, deep area for older kids and a slide, and a gradual entry pool/area like Dormont for toddlers and the elderly.

    We actually only go to Dormont now — at least there my kids can wear floaties and actually learn to swim. No family with a mix of ages can use the Mt. Lebo pool as it exists now. And the locker facilities are an absolute disgrace.

    I am all for a private aquatics center and not using tax funds for this at all. Our taxes, plus the pool pass fees, are all high enough already.

    Reply
  • 3. Lebo Resident  |  August 9, 2006 at 2:29 pm

    Many of my Mt. L neighbors do not use the Mt. Lebanon pool. Rather, they join one of the local swim clubs or country clubs. Perhaps it would be a good idea to find out why more residents are not using the municipal pool. Why are people choosing to pay to belong to other pools? For me, there are several issues. Parking stinks. It is too hard to lug mythree kids and all of their gear from the upper parking lot down to the pool and back at the end of the day. There are way too many unsupervised kids from playground camps. The snack bar area does not have adequate seating and the lines are too long. THe playground area is a bad idea. If I’m paying for my kids to swim I want them in the pool, not on the playground – plus, it is unsafe when it inevitably gets wet.
    The locker rooms are gross.

    Reply
  • 4. Nancy Marshall  |  August 10, 2006 at 9:56 am

    We applaud the council’s initiative in wanting to upgrade the pool facilities. People (like us) are seeking to live in Mt. Lebanon because of the mature and well developed educational, cultural and recreational programs. These facilities must be kept up, continulally to a standard one would expect in Mt. Lebanon.

    We have been a little surprised (disappointed) at how run-down the pool facilities are in terms of general maintenance and cleanliness. The bathrooms are not being cleaned properly or regularly, the stairs on the slides are missing numerous treads, etc. I would also submit for your consideration to rethink the concession stand as a revenue source and provide a more robust and healthy menu – moms would spend lots more $$ there! (and whats up with $4 for a chair- no one uses them!) None of these items require capital funding – just creative and diligent management.

    As far as the pool itself – I believe a waterpark is a bit much. We need a multi-use facility – and the competitve part cannot be left out. We introduced our children to competitive swimimng through the pirahnas program this summer, and this program absolutely must be supported by any new facility. We already have slides and fountains, leave the lazy river for Sandcastle…..

    Thanks for your committment to excellence in our community .

    Reply
  • 5. Lifelong Resident  |  August 11, 2006 at 4:21 am

    I would like to see a community pool that offers all residents a leisurely visit, one that takes into account a lot of different uses, but I think a waterpark is too much. In fact, I would go so far as to say that I would really hate a waterpark because its just not necessary; one or two features might be nice–like the waterslide and that spigot that we already have–but more than that would change the spirit of a leisurely visit to the municipal pool. People here take their kids to Splash Lagoon or to Sandcastle quite easily–do we need to compete with those venues? I would think we should more logically be competing with private pools and country clubs–figure out why people go there instead of to the municipal pool.

    What I would like to see in Mt. Lebanon would be a much nicer pool than anywhere else–a better entrance, some landscaping and structures so that there’s some shade, a zero-depth edge in several locations for easier entry for everyone, more benches or tables with umbrellas scattered around so that parents can sit and watch their children in different parts of the pool, and a decent dressing room.

    I would also like to see the recreation center and pool become more of a unit, perhaps a wall of sliding glass doors on the rec center that opens out onto the pool and allows for more recreational opportunities, particularly for the Teen Center, swim meets, or swim parties for groups renting the area after the public swim sessions.

    I’d also like to see a nicer snack bar with better food choices. I don’t entirely mean healthier food, just better quality food. The food we currently get is just cheap and gross. And the atmosphere around the snack bar and at the tables is not very pleasant, either.

    All in all, I would like to have a basic pool that is a lot nicer than ours is. As it is now, it is difficult to use if you are not either swimming in it or sitting at the kiddie pool because there’s no place for anyone to congregate and socialize, and there’s no comfortable place to relax. I would like to see it become a place we go to play and chill out, a place that is much more user friendly and encourages socializing. I think its wiser to avoid the gimmicks and water park attractions and stick with a commitment to making the Mt. Lebanon pool a gem in our community that, hopefully, will last another thirty years.

    Reply
  • 6. Lily  |  August 14, 2006 at 11:22 pm

    Some shade over the kiddie pool would be nice. Baby skin just can’t tolerate the sun.

    Reply
  • 7. melanie  |  August 27, 2006 at 10:09 am

    I think an aquatic center is a great idea! My family lives in the Atlanta, GA area, and the neighborhood pools there are incredible. They have “lazy rivers”, slides, fountains and more. I think the residents of this community would love that. I also like the idea of tables with umbrellas and lounge chairs around the pool so we can better watch our kids. I believe that there should be a competitive area as well. Mt. Lebanon has a great reputation for its swimming program and we would not want to lose that.

    Reply
  • 8. Anne  |  September 1, 2006 at 7:25 pm

    I agree with thr comments about improving the changing/bathroom facilities and the snack bar. Although I believe that the nicest facility can be disgraceful without adequate staff training and pride in their work. The pool would be improved with a shallower entry and a better thought out kiddie pool. I agree that multi age families have a hard time using the current pool safely, and whats with not allowing armbands?

    For me we could build a pool with a diving area, lanes, shallow wading area, maybe a little heat? A couple of slides – Hey sounds a bit like what we already have without the heat! Even if we don’t build a whole new pool raze the bath houses!

    Reply
  • 9. Larry  |  September 6, 2006 at 12:33 am

    Nothing is being said about whether or not these Taj Mahal Community pools are making a profit for the various community. To take on such an expensive project only for the pool to run in the red seem like a waste of taxpayers dollars. My feeling is to update the existing pool without the bells and whistles of a Sandcastle-like pool. Leave the profit maximizing ventures to the private sector.

    Reply

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