Thank you again, community members, for voicing your support for the future of Eugene Parks and Rec. The $39 million bond and $3.15 million levy passed in May 2018 has helped Eugene Rec begin work to renovate Echo Hollow Pool & Fitness Center and Campbell Community Center.
Construction on both facilities is starting this winter, and now it’s time to turn our attention to Sheldon Pool & Fitness Center. To meet increased demand for pool space for recreation, fitness and competitive swimmers, it’s time to renovate. Bathrooms and locker rooms need upgrading to meet increased occupancy and code requirements and better utilizing the indoor space is key. Improving the energy efficiency of the pool is also required by code.
We are beginning the process of renovating the City’s oldest pool, and the first thing we need is to hear from the public. There are two public outreach sessions scheduled at 6 p.m. Feb. 12 and Feb. 13 at Campbell Community Center. These meetings are great opportunities to hear from City planners and the architecture firm leading the redesign. At this early stage we want to know how you currently use Sheldon Pool and what amenities and programs you would like to see considered in the renovation.
Don’t worry if you can’t make either session. There’s also a survey you can take. Hearing from as many people as possible is important to us so the final design reflects community preferences.
Why Sheldon Pool now? In the lead up to approving the May 2018 Bond and Levy measures, Eugene City Council members increased the amount to be asked for because they felt it was important to include Sheldon Pool in the plan. It was built in 1967 with money from another bond and since then repairs, replacements and upgrades have been made that enhanced energy efficiency and maintained operation. However, many essential systems such as plumbing, electrical and equipment are beyond their expected useful lifespan and are in need of replacement.
Located next to Sheldon High School and Sheldon Community Center, this year-around indoor pool has a two-pool design that features a deep diving well and lap pool, which allows for both deep and shallow water fitness programming. Sheldon Pool also provides a variety of aquatic programming such as swim lessons, recreation swims and lap swims in addition to a fitness center and partnering with Sheldon Community Center for summer camps. Based on the three-year process of creating the Eugene Parks and Recreation System Plan, it was recommended 8,500 square feet of expanded natatorium, new indoor pool/ therapy pool, spa and recreation amenities be added to Sheldon Pool. Renovated locker rooms and expanding the fitness center were prioritized, as was finding ways to expand the parking lot, which the pool and Sheldon Community Center share with Sheldon High School.
Also in the recommendation were plans to renew interior finishes, ceilings, lighting, systems and replacing the HVAC, roof and pool equipment. Sheldon Pool did close in 2010 for seismic upgrades and again in 2012 to repair serious leaks, but a full overhaul of the building will ensure the facility can accommodate the growing needs of the community as a key part of the City-wide aquatics program.
We heard you loud and clear about your vision for the future of our parks and recreation system. We are excited to get to work on building a legacy future generations can enjoy.
If you are interested in learning about the full extent of what Eugene Parks and Rec System Plan, please visit eugparksandrec.org. There you will find all the current information on what both Parks and Rec have in store to improve our system.