Clifton Park pool plan moves ahead

One month after opening a new elementary school, Shenendehowa is still expanding.

Design is complete for a new pool on the main campus across from the bus garage. The district hopes to complete bidding for the project in October and begin construction of the $10 million pool this winter. Weather permitting, construction should be completed within 18 months.

The pool will feature eight stretch swimming lanes with a movable bulkhead separating the deep and shallow ends. Shenendehowa Athletic Director Christopher Culnan said that students in all grades will be able to use the pool, based on curriculum.

It really expands what the PE teachers can do with regards to their curriculum, Culnan said. "Looking at an overall wellness curriculum and the direction that they're moving, a pool really fits into those themes."

The pool will be available for public access and will also give the district's swim team a permanent and local home. The team has bounced between nearby high schools and colleges in the past, and currently swims at the University at Albany.

"If you look at what we pay in rental charges and the logistics of coordinating our team to go off campus, there's a lot of logistics that go into that," Culnan said. "I think having our facility on campus not only opens it up for just the swim team, it opens it up for our students and our community as well, which I think is really beneficial."

Superintendent L. Oliver Robinson said it was a major program enhancement for the district.

"There are a lot of community resources, a lot of learn-to-swim classes, opportunities for kids to learn water safety," Robinson said. "This has truly become another significant community resource, and that's why it's important."

The pool will also include starting blocks, timers and diving boards to support competitive swimming, with seating for 400. The facility will have a constant air-circulation system that will remove airborne chemicals that gather on the water.

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