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Design firms try to make a splash with Chambersburg pool proposals

November 27, 2007|By ASHLEY HARTMAN

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - The Chambersburg Borough Council heard proposals from two consulting firms Monday night regarding the borough's memorial pool.

The pool was built in 1969 and requires a great deal of maintenance on a daily basis to keep it going, according to Recreation Department Superintendent Herb Dolaway.

"The pool is functional, but we should do something in five years," Dolaway said.

In August, Dolaway and Julie Redding, assistant superintendent of the recreation department, were asked by the borough council to talk to some consulting firms.

The two consulting firms chosen to present their proposals were MKSD Architects, LLC of Allentown, Pa. in association with Counsilman and Hunsaker of St. Louis, and Wade Associates, LLC of Harrisburg, Pa., in association with YSM Landscape Architects of York, Pa.

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Scott W. Hester of Counsilman and Hunsaker, an aquatic planning and design group, said in the planning and design process, the firm would begin by evaluating the work that has been done to date on the pool.

"We want to see at your existing facility what we can utilize," said Hester, adding that the pool's bath house could possibly be used as is.

Hester also said the firm would analyze area demographics as well as operational expenses and revenue potential.

"We want to get to know your community," Hester said. "We'll involve the community very heavily."

Although the firm did present three ideas for Chambersburg's memorial pool, Steve Crocker of Counsilman and Hunsaker emphasized that the firm did not feel comfortable giving out ideas before talking to the community.

One option they suggested included a waterslide, vortex, lazy river, participatory play feature and spray ground, costing $2.5 to $3 million. A second option, at a cost of $4.5 million, had a larger leisure pool and a 10 to 12 foot ride channel (lazy river).

Finally, they presented more of a free-form shaped design, with an L-shape competition pool with diving separate from swimming, a tot pool and spray ground. Each proposal would utilize the existing bathhouse.

"The actual site layout you have, it really seems to make the most sense right now," Hester said.

"What is your experience with increases in pool usage, after you go from traditional L-shape pool to one with more recreational features," Chambersburg Borough Council President William McLaughlin asked MKSD and Counsilman and Hunsaker.

"It's not uncommon, when you go from your 1970s pool, to think that you can go from increasing attendance to three (to) five times," Crocker said.

Wade Associates did not present any specific pool designs, but did offer some starting points.

In the schematic and design development phase, the firm would first renovate the existing pool facility to bring it up to code, according to Wayne Wade of Wade Associates.

The firm would convert the existing facility into a leisure pool concept, which would include renovations to the main pool and wading pool structures, installation of water features and designating other areas within the pool for different types of programs and functions, Wade said.

"The L-shaped, rectangular shape of the 1970s is no longer cutting it today," he said. "What we're trying to do in our approach today is what needs to be fixed to preserve the pool and bring it up to code and what can you do to enhance the pool."

Wade Associates renovated Waynesboro's pool several years ago and the budget was a little more than $1 million, Wade said.

"The one thing we really try to avoid is doing any type of proprietary designs for you," said Wade, "We have a pretty good track record of keeping a project in budget."

The Chambersburg borough council plans to make a decision on either of the two firms by the beginning of 2008.

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