Archive for September, 2006

Ideas Shared at Public Meeting

Despite an unforseen conflict with the high school’s open house–and resulting parking problems–about 65 residents attended the September 6 public meeting about plans for a new aquatic center.  Scott Hunsacker of Councilman-Hunsacker, the consulting firm that is conducting the feasibility study, made a brief presentation that included pictures of state-of-the art centers around the country. The facilities ranged in style and price from moderate to high end, with the idea of showing residents the various options that might or might not be included in Mt. Lebanon’s aquatic center.

Following the presentation, the group broke into four sub groups with municipal staff members acting as facilitators and brainstormed around four topics, with their ideas recorded for the consultants to study later.  The questions were: Which of the following uses for a swim center–recreation, competition, wellness, or lessons–would you give the highest priority?  If you could retain one thing about the existing Mt. Lebanon Pool, what would it be?  If you could change one thing about the existing Mt. Lebanon Pool, what would it be? (If money were no object), what amenities would you like to see included?)

The groups, which made presentations at the end, unanimously agreed that recreation should take top priority. (Most people included wellness activities as a form of recreation). Participants also unanimously agreed,  that teaching every child to swim should remain a goal and that a new facility should provide for the same types of competition that currently take place in Mt. Lebanon’s 50-meter outdoor pool.

Common requests were for heated water, zero-depth entry, more shade, more deck chairs, a baby pool connected to the main pool and nicer locker rooms. Most people favored retaining the current “footprint” and having a limited but not huge number of recreational amenities such as the existing water slide and sprinkler.

At the evening’s end, each group was asked to present two points that summarized its discussions.  Basically, people agreed that they wanted an updated, clean, safe aquatic center that would meet the needs of residents of all interests and ages–a pool with some recreational amenities but not too many “bells and whistles.”  And all agreed that is is critical for the school district and the municipality to coordinate their separate renovation plans so that there is not a substantial duplication of effort of an undue burden placed on taxpayers.

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September 8, 2006 at 9:42 am 5 comments

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