During their meeting on Dec. 10, White Sulphur Springs City Council members got to examine new blueprints for the municipal swimming pool and wellness center, which will be located at Dick Gunnoe Memorial Park.
Tom Crabtree with Crabtree, Rohrbaugh, and Associates Architects presented the plans, and called the endeavor, “a terrific project and a great idea.”
The updated facility will have two family changing rooms on the left-hand side of the building, the same side the pool will be located on, designed for easy access for pool goers needing to change into their swimming gear. The right-hand side of the building will house the fitness center and aerobics area. The bathrooms will be located adjacent to the changing rooms, toward the center of the building for convenient use by both swimmers and fitness center users, along with men’s and a women’s locker room beside the fitness area. An office area would be situated in the middle of the facility.
Crabtree discussed how this flow should be beneficial for all using the facility, due to the layout and openness of the space. “You’ll come from the pool up a newly constructed walkway up to a little lobby, and off of that lobby would be two family changing rooms. We anticipate those would be heavily used by families using the swimming pool. And then two larger restrooms and shower rooms beyond that lobby to serve both the pool and the wellness center,” said Crabtree. This layout reflects other facilities, such as The Greenbrier, which were designed with ease-of-use in mind.
“We can open all of the building up and make it a very nice, useable space,” he added. The interior, plumbing, and roof will all be completely redone, as well as new siding for the exterior. Current walkways will be demolished, along with the old pool deck, to help start the new pool construction in spring of 2019.
According to an earlier press release, the two-phase plan is funded through a gift of $75,000 from the Rural Development Partners’ group, which was matched by the WV Great Barrel Company. The Greenbrier is contributing fitness equipment, and Homes for White Sulphur Springs is furnishing professional project management for the project. The Greenbrier County Commission committed $250,000 toward rebuilding the pool, and members of the Greenbrier Sporting Club then matched county funding. Additional fundraising is underway through the fiscal sponsorship of the Greenbrier Valley Community Foundation.
Crabtree clarified that, “As the city expends funds with city workers doing some of the work, we will reimburse the city.” He added that public comments are welcome on the proposed plans, and that the layout was designed in such a way that it would be easy to expand the structure if more space is needed. The plans have already been submitted to the state, and bids will be open for construction “as soon as the state allows.”
Councilmember Mary Collins said the plans are “wonderful,” and Mayor Bruce Bowling added that, “this will be a great addition to our already magnificent park,” and thanked Crabtree personally. A round of applause was held at the end of the presentation as a show of support.
A groundbreaking ceremony for the project will be held on Saturday, Dec. 15, at 2 p.m. at Dick Gunnoe Memorial Park. Those interested in sponsoring the project can mail their tax-deductible donation to The Greenbrier County Community Foundation, P.O. Box 1682, Lewisburg, WV 24901.