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Cookeville Aquatics Facility Committee See Preliminary Design Plans

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville Aquatics Facility Committee See Preliminary Design Plans

A potential indoor/outdoor aquatics facility in Cookeville could cost some $26.5 million.

The steering committee saw preliminary design plans for the facility Tuesday night that address the biggest wants from the community. Those include a competition pool. indoor and outdoor swimming, a lazy river, and other childrens aquatic activities. Steering Committee Member Janet Coonce coaches Cookeville High School’s swim team.

“I’m just excited about water in Cookeville,” Coonce said. “We don’t have Echo Valley anymore, we don’t have a warm pool and a cold pool, we don’t have access for everybody to learn to swim. And so really to have more water for our community will help to build a healthier community, a healthier people.”

Committee member Brad Westrick is an exercise and sports science instructor at Tennessee Tech. He said that he likes the idea of both an indoor and outdoor facility to serve all of the community’s needs, but wants the potential phasing process better addressed.

“I think with the reality of budget constraints, having the facility built at one time would be great,” Westrick said. “So right now I think there’s a faction that wants the outdoor pool built first, there’s one that wants the indoor pool built first. So I think that tis kind of the sticking point, where is it possible to build it all at one time or is it something that needs to be phased in?”

City Council Member Eric Walker said that the location still yet to be determined could play a huge role in the next steps of this facility’s process. He said that as a council member, his initial concern is balancing the cost of this project with other city projects.

“Certainly we need to know what the cost of the land is,” Walker said. “Without having a site selected and understanding what that cost will be, it could greatly vary the cost of the overall project. So until you have all your numbers, it’s hard to move forward on something. So I think it will be really important for the city to hone in exactly what it wants and what our costs are going to be because we have to balance those costs. Despite how bad we want a pool, we’ve certainly got to balance that with all the infrastructure growth and everything else we’ve got going on in the city.”

Leisure Services Director Rick Woods said that the next steps will be to acquire the land, as well as figure out how the potential phasing of the project will work.

“We have to identify available land, we have to know what we’re going to build right now, if it’s indoor, or outdoor or everything right now,” Woods said. “But land is key, and then we can determine what kind of phasing, and have conversations with council, and look at what kind of phasing we might consider.”


The post Cookeville Aquatics Facility Committee See Preliminary Design Plans appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.