Wednesday, September 08, 1999
City, schools dive in on pool
BY ANDREA TORTORA
The Cincinnati Enquirer
COVINGTON Local residents and high school swim teams could be hitting the waves in a new pool at Latonia Elementary next summer.
Members of the Covington Board of Education and the Covington City Commission agreed Tuesday to pursue plans to build a pool on land next to the school.
The move is the first concrete decision on building a new pool since the city closed the Rosedale Pool at 45th Street and Virginia Avenue after flood damage in June 1997.
The next step is to identify project costs and determine the legal requirements for a land swap.
To build the pool, the school district would give the city land near Latonia Elementary, at 39th Street and Huntington Avenue, in exchange for another piece of property.
We need a pool there, said Mike Fitzgerald, school board member. We've waited for two years. I want to swim.
The price of an outdoor pool could fall between $400,000 and $700,000, said Greg Jarvis, city manager. An enclosed pool could cost up to $2 million. Funding would likely come from a bond issue.
City commissioners and school board members said they want to build an outdoor pool that could later be enclosed for year-round use.
There's enough room there to make it attractive, said Jerry Bamberger, city commissioner. But no matter where we put it, it will have an impact on the neighborhood and individuals.
When the Rosedale Pool closed, the city provided residents with bus transportation from Latonia to Randolph and Goebel pools.
School and city officials also agreed to develop the concept of an athletic commission to coordinate the improvement of recreational facilities used by the city, Covington Schools, Holy Cross School and Covington Latin.
Deteriorating and inadequate facilities put the four entities together to develop plans for joint fields, stadiums, courts and other recreational areas.
A survey of local schools found the Holy Cross cross-country teams practice in the streets while Covington Latin's varsity track uses a parking lot.
The things we need to do are all prohibitive for any one group, Covington Schools Superintendent James Kemp said.
Possible projects include:
Installing artificial turf at Holmes' Ellis Stadium so it can be used by all three schools for football and soccer.
Developing two new baseball fields.
Developing practice soccer fields.
Adding new tennis courts at Holmes High.
A committee of representatives from each school and the city will create recommendations for a joint December meeting to prioritize projects and set up a plan of action.
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