William Grady Pool Status Updates

Updates as of December 21, 2017

Belvidere Township Park District

William Grady Pool Status Update, December 14, 2017

On November 27, 2017 the Belvidere Township Park District opened bids for a replacement of the faltering DE filter that cleans the water in the main vessel at William Grady Pool.  While the Park appreciates those contractors that spent time looking at the project, we were disappointed that only one bid was submitted which was from Mechanical Incorporated of Freeport.  The single bid was at the high end of our anticipated cost range and we had no comparisons to help with our evaluation.  At the November 28 regular park board meeting, the commissioners decided to reject the bid to repair/replace the DE filter and to focus on long range planning for the District’s aquatic recreational needs.  Several factors besides cost considerations influenced this decision.

During the last weeks of the 2016 operational season, the pool experienced turbid water in the dive well and lap lanes due to leaked DE from the filter causing partial and sometimes complete closure of the facility.  After substantial testing and repair work during August/September 2016, it was determined that most of the problem had been rectified although the filter was nearing the end of its life expectancy.

During the 2017 operational season we continued to battle mechanical issues that sporadically closed the facility or parts of the facility but most of the closures were caused by an unrelated mechanical issue with the chlorination system that treated the small pool.  Although we were still getting some DE in the large pool, our staff was able to control the problem with additional vacuuming of the pool floor and walls.  Staff increased the length of the pre-coat cycle allowing a larger percentage of the suspended DE material to re-attach to the filter itself.

Staff has confidence that the William Grady Pool will open and continue to operate for the 2018 season.  A reimbursement procedure has been initiated to encourage the public’s confidence in our admission policies.  There will be a full refund of season pass costs if we do not open the pool and a pro-rated system in the event that we close early based on mechanical failure.

I want to conclude with the statement the Park District fully intends to open and operate the William Grady Pool as marketed for the 2018 season.  No long range decisions have been made about the future of the pool nor for any other potential aquatic facility.  The District intends to engage the community with public hearings and planning discussions during future months.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mark Pentecost

Executive Director 


Updates as of September 29, 2017

 

At the regularly scheduled Belvidere Park District Board of Commissioners Meeting on September 12, 2017, approval was given to enter an agreement with Burbach Aquatics to design and bid a filter repair project to increase the life expectancy of the William Grady Pool.  The agreement establishes investigating both replacement and repair of the existing Pressure Diatomaceous Earth Filter to maintain the most financial accountability to the project.  Approval was only granted to design and bid the project and if the financial burden proves to be low enough, consideration for execution of the project will be voted on later this fall.  At this point no determination has been made on a direction for either investing in the current facility or investigating the possible need of a future facility.  The failing filter is the most pressing issue and if a decision is made to address the problem it will allow the District more time to investigate both options while continuing to maintain our current aquatic offerings with the  anticipation of minimum interruptions.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mark Pentecost
Executive Director
Belvidere Township Park District

 


 

Belvidere Township Park District

Public Hearing to discuss the future of William Grady Pool and the community needs for aquatic recreation for the next 1-25 years.
July 25th, 2017 5:00pm at Rivers Edge Recreation Center; 1151 West Locust St. Belvidere, II 61008
William Grady Pool nestled amongst the mature oak trees and winding Mill Race in Belvidere Park is reaching a critical point in its effective life expectancy that will need to be addressed sooner rather than later. Despite efforts of the park staff and commissioners, the pool complex originally built as a WPA project in 1939 is need of repairs and substantial capital investment. The last major renovation was conducted in 1986 resulting in an enclosed bathhouse and a new pool vessel/tank including a new circulation system

After struggling with filtration issues during the 2016 summer, the Park District retained the professional services of Burbach Aquatics to conduct a technical evaluation of what could be done to extend the life of the pool. This report is available for review on the Park District website under the Board Meetings tab. Some of the issues were addressed and the pool opened in June 2017. However, major issues and additional problems pose difficult situations and decisions for the 2018 season and beyond.

The Park District will be conducting a Public Hearing during its regularly scheduled Board Meeting on July 25th, 2017 at 5pm with an anticipated start time of the pool discussion around 5:30pm. The public is invited and encouraged to attend this meeting located at the Rivers Edge Recreation Center, 1151 West Locust St. After presenting the situation currently facing the pool, the public will have an opportunity to comment and to give input on the future of aquatic recreation within the services provided by the Belvidere Township Park District.

Respectfully Submitted,
Mark Pentecost
Executive Director
Belvidere Township Park District

 


 

Public Meeting AgendaClick here to read

 

Public Meeting Minutes 7/25/17 – Click here to read

 

Burhack Aquatics Technical ReportThe Technical Evaluation of the William Grady Swimming Pool