Larger pool planned at Roger Carter Center

August 05, 1994|By Sherry Joe | Sherry Joe,Sun Staff Writer

The only county-operated public swimming pool is scheduled to be replaced at the Roger Carter Neighborhood Center. The slightly larger pool will provide access for the disabled and elderly.

The new 25-meter pool is part of a $1.6 million renovation project at the center that will include a two-story addition, locker rooms, picnic facility and more parking.

Ellicott City's Historic District Commission got its first look last night at plans for the building at 3676 Fels Lane. Members are to meet next week to vote on the renovation project.

County officials hope to begin construction of the new pool andlocker facilities after Labor Day to avoid closing the pool during the swimming season. The new pool is scheduled to open by next season.

"That's very good news for us," said Barbara Moore, recreation coordinator for the northern section of the county. "We won't have to close the pool for a year."

The new pool will be 15 feet east of the existing 25-yard pool, which develops cracks every year because it sits above natural water springs, according to Gary J. Arthur, recreation bureau chief for the county Recreation and Parks Department.

Each year, the county spends "several thousand dollars" repairing the pool area, Ms. Moore said.

"It needs to be completely redone," Ms. Moore said of the pool, which was installed 18 years ago. "Patchwork is very expensive."

The new pool will feature a gradual slope to give easy entry to seniorcitizens, the disabled and children. A wading pool will be built nearby for small children.

Children who attend a day camp at the center can hardly wait for the new pool.

"I think we need a new diving board and a baby pool for the little kids because the big kids are in the shallow end [of the existing pool]," said Heather Jones, 9, of Columbia.

The plan calls for an addition to be built alongside the center's existing building, which includes two offices and two large meeting rooms on the first floor, and an aquatics office, showers and rooms for weightlifting and exercise in the basement.

The weight-lifting and exercise rooms are so small that only 10 people can use them at one time, Ms. Moore said. And there is only room for one desk, a cot and sink in the aquatics office. Under the renovation, the aquatics office and exercise rooms will be replaced.

BTC The addition will include new locker rooms and a large activity room that can be closed off to create two conference rooms. The addition will allow the recreation center to expand its programs for toddlers and offer activities for senior citizens.

County officials also plan to add 15 to 20 parking spaces in front of the building and construct a tot lot and a group picnic facility on a 1.5-acre plot next door to the center.

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