Dive tank at city pool to be demolished after officials find heavy damage
By Tyler Stocks
The Daily Reflector
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
Local swimmers’ spirits may take a dive after learning that part of an area pool will not be open this summer.
The dive tank at Greenville’s Community Pool, located at located at 2113 Myrtle Ave., is scheduled to be demolished after city officials found major structural issues during their recent inspection.
The findings were disclosed in a memo distributed by Greenville City Manager Ann Wall on Feb. 13.
According to the memo, the damage is near the pump house which controls the filter system for the main pool and the dive tank, and the pool deck near the south edge of the pool fencing. The concrete area between the pump house and dive tank, which includes filter lanes, has been significantly damaged, the memo said.
Officials believe the damage is limited to the dive tank area of the pool and was likely caused by the tank’s shell being pushed from below by the area’s high water table, the memo said. The resulting pressure, in combination with the pool’s advanced age and leaks over time, finally caused failure in the adjacent concrete.
The main pool still will open on June 8 according to Director of Recreation and Parks, Gary Fenton.
“Obviously, our customers won't have access to the dive tank any longer, but the main part of the pool will still be operating and that’s what most people come for,” Fenton said on Tuesday.
The pool is at least 47 years old according to the memo and the average life expectancy for such a structure is 50 years.
Fenton said that in the next five to eight years, the city will consider building a new pool at a location not far from Myrtle Avenue. To save money, the city will simply demolish the dive tank instead of trying to replace it.
“Eventually, we’ll have to rebuild and that’s not 20 years away,” Fenton said. “Rather than put a lot of money into the current pool, we’ll save our money for a bigger job in the future. We’re thinking about taking it out and creating a deck in that area and some grass as well and just doing without (the dive tank).”
When asked about the safety of the pool and its structural integrity, Fenton said that pool operation requires competent staffing and that safety is a daily consideration.
“A pool in its nature is someplace where you have to have a staff that is competent and knows all the regulations and knows how to balance the water and maintain the different chlorine levels and all the different pieces of that,” he said. “That’s a daily consideration. Safety is a huge issue in the pool and you always have a staff that’s trained to deal with that.
“We don’t see that as a safety issue at this point,” Fenton said. “We’ve never had a serious incident; we’ve certainly pulled kids from the water on occasion at both the outdoor and indoor pool but so has every other pool. That’s what you have guards for.”
The cost to demolish the dive tank has not been determined. Fenton said the city is letting out bids to see how much the project would cost.
Another issue raised in the memo was addressing scheduling conflicts for those using the baseball and swimming facilities. The memo outlined the potential for foul balls entering the pool area.
“We have some conflicts on occasion and we kind of have to coordinate tournaments because we don’t foul balls coming over into the pool and hitting somebody,” Fenton said.
Contact Tyler Stocks at firstname.lastname@example.org or 252-329-9566.