County looks to add pool at Sam Michaels Park

July 16, 2007|by DAVE McMILLION

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - The Jefferson County Commission has decided to hire an architect to design an indoor pool at a newly opened community center at Sam Michaels Park.

The commissioners also decided Thursday to hire an architect to design a new court annex near the existing Jefferson County Courthouse at the intersection of George and Washington streets in Charles Town.

The commissioners have talked in the past about the need to build an indoor pool to meet recreational needs in the county.

There is a lack of swimming facilities in the county and county residents who responded to a recent survey about parks and recreation facilities in Jefferson County said another swimming pool was a priority for them, county officials have said.


Last year, county officials talked about building the indoor pool at Sam Michaels Park off Job Corps Road north of Charles Town and going to county voters to ask their approval for an excess property tax levy to pay for it.

The tax levy proposal was later scrapped for several reasons, including concerns that it might affect a school excess levy proposal at the time.

The pool would cost about $3 million, and the commissioners agreed Thursday to spend about $300,000 to hire an architect to draw up a design for the pool, said Commissioner Dale Manuel.

The commissioners agreed to spend about $700,000 to hire an architect to draw up court annex plans.

County commission members have talked for years about building a court facility to meet the county government's growing space needs and several proposals have been discussed.

One proposal called for tearing down the former Jefferson County Jail at the intersection of Liberty and George streets, but now the jail is being renovated for more government office space.

Caseloads in local courts have been rising and magistrates, the Jefferson County Prosecuting Attorney's office and other court offices were moved into a new facility along George Street across from the current courthouse in 2000.

Within two years of its opening, magistrates were running out of space.

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