TEXAS CITY — College of the Mainland’s pool is closed and in need of repairs. The college’s trustees will decide whether the 42-year-old pool is worth repairing. 

The pool was closed at the end of the semester in May after the heater broke, college President Beth Lewis said. 

The heater is vital, particularly in an indoor pool, because it helps keep bacteria levels low, she said. 

According to a rough estimate, replacing the heater could cost about $240,000 — and that is just one of 14 repairs that must be made. The total repair costs could be nearly $300,000, Lewis said. 

The annual operating costs for the pool are about $144,000, she said. 

Additionally, the pool is leaking about 2,500 gallons of water a day, and the leak or leaks haven’t been found because the water pipes are under the pool itself, she said. 

“We’ve already spent $2,500 looking for the leak,” she said. 

The pool will remain closed until the repairs are made — or it could be closed permanently and the college could look to use the city’s natatorium for the college’s water classes, Lewis said. 

According to data provided by the college, 624 people signed up for various swimming and exercises classes in the pool during the summer and fall of 2013 and the spring of 2014. There also were about 150 visitors who used the pool weekly during those past three semesters, according to the college data. The pool brought in about $38,000 from fees paid by those using the pool. 

College trustee Nick Stepchinski said he believed the number of people using the pool is low because of its deteriorated condition. 

“The pool is not in the condition it has been in before, and we’ve kind of been patching it when we could,” he said. “But imagine if the pool was in really great shape. How many more people would use it?”

The pool is popular with seniors, and Stepchinski said he believed it was worth keeping open as long as the repair costs were not unbearable. 

“We need to try to find a way to make it work,” he said. 

Board Chairman Roney McCrary said the trustees will get a chance to tour the pool at 9 a.m. Monday during a workshop. Trustees will meet later that day in a regular meeting, he said. 

“This is just one more issue that you deal with with an aging facility,” McCrary said. 

 

Contact reporter Christopher Smith Gonzalez at 409-683-5314 or chris.gonzalez@galvnews.com

(6) comments

George Croix

"According to a rough estimate, replacing the heater could cost about $240,000 — and that is just one of 14 repairs that must be made. The total repair costs could be nearly $300,000, Lewis said.
The annual operating costs for the pool are about $144,000, she said.
Additionally, the pool is leaking about 2,500 gallons of water a day, and the leak or leaks haven’t been found because the water pipes are under the pool itself, she said."
My own pool was leaking about 200 gals/day, and it raised my monthly water bill about 50-60 bucks. This one is ~12 times that. Mine is open air/in ground, so the leak was fairly easy to find, fix. And, being open air, there's no need to keep it heated for bacteria control. Only need a heater for the smaller built in hot tub area.
Heating pool water is Expensive, with a capital E.

Suggestion:
Why not scrap the existing 42 year old pool repair.
You can take that 300 grand and build a VERY nice outdoor/in ground lap pool, maybe 5 or 6 feet deep at deepest, and put a large hot tub on the end or side and just heat that. You will need nowhere near 144,000 bucks/year to maintain it (a big savings will be in not running a heater for a whole pool), and could use that savings for other things, like a screen enclosure around it, maybe. Heck, for 300 grand, you could easily get the whole package turn key.

JBG JBG

Man they "sho" paid those Petro superintendents some good money!!![beam][beam]

George Croix

No.
Superintendent was above my pay grade.
My job was the next level down, at the front line(s), where you do all you can to keep the next level up from getting into trouble and screwing things up... [beam][beam][beam]
I never made it any higher than Fire Captain, either...
Underachiever....[wink]

vic krc
Victor Krc

And you were poking fun at my scotch and cigars...

I'll bet you have a wine cellar too...

PD Hyatt

If you are leading 2500 gallons of water a day under a foundation I would hate to see what the damage you are doing to that buildings foundation....There has to be a big hole being created under there....

George Croix

I don't drink wine...[beam].
There's just not a doubt in my mind that good money after bad is not good.
300 grand is a LOT of money even when it's somebody else's money.
I could have built 10 of mine for that, and with 'historic' low interest rates and not a lot of work to be found out there, you can get a couple bangs for a single buck.
IF you have a dollar....[wink]
If the City of TC allows COM to use the City pool, even though COM is out here with the rest of us secondary citizens in 'West' Texas City, then it becomes moot.
Until the building that the current pool is in falls into the new cavern washing out under it...[whistling]

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.