Leak closes Eastside Park pool
by Rory Doyle
Jun 26, 2013 | 2477 views | 0 0 comments | 84 84 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cleveland's only public swimming pool is closed for the summer due to a crack in the foundation. The Cleveland Park Commission is researching options for repairing or replacing the pool.
Cleveland's only public swimming pool is closed for the summer due to a crack in the foundation. The Cleveland Park Commission is researching options for repairing or replacing the pool.
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It's a worst-case scenario this summer for the public pool at Eastside Park, according to Cleveland Park Commission Director Stephen Glorioso.

Inspectors have already assessed the pool, built in the ’60s, as it was having trouble keeping water in.

Summer swimmers are now at a loss without the city's only public access pool.

"We ran a test and it showed a bad leak has been occurring underneath the foundation for a while," said Glorioso. "We had to close it for our number one reason — it's a safety problem."

Soil that gave way under one corner of the structure eventually caused the shell of the pool to crack and leak. As water continued to seep underground, more and more soil started washing away underneath the pool bottom.

"It's really unfortunate and this was the last thing we wanted going into the summer," said Glorioso. "I wish there was another pool option, but there isn’t.

"We just can't take a chance of putting children at risk."

Under expert guidance, the city decided to close the pool until a decision is made to either repair it or start over with a completely new pool.

Glorioso is researching reconstruction options and getting quotes on costs. His task is to bring the best option to the Cleveland Board of Aldermen before a budget decision is made in August.

One quote has already estimated costs to be between $275,000-$350,000. This would cover all technical work, breaking out the main drainage plumbing, deck repair, a refinishing on the pool's interior and more.

"It's going to be tough, but I know the board is going to do anything and everything humanly possible to resolve this," said Glorioso. "Whether they choose to fix the existing pool or replace it all together, the city is going to do whatever they can."

Without the Eastside pool, children can still experience water fun at the city's two wading pools — one at Fireman's Park and one at Sterling Anderson Park on Aloe Avenue.

Glorioso said he would not be opposed to considering a new sprinkler park for families as opposed to a pool.

"These can be a lot of fun and they're a great setting for the entire family," he said. "You also don't have to spend as much time managing the chlorine and filtration system.

"A sprinkler park could go almost anywhere in the neighborhood."

Despite the current pool's unfortunate recent downfalls, Glorioso said it has served well over the years.

"If you've had a pool for 50 years, you've gotten your money out of it," he said. "It's bad that the ultimate thing we feared the most happened — closing for the summer — but now we know it's time for a repair or a completely new pool."

Glorioso said he doesn't want youth to go another summer without a pool.

If the process is too expensive to rebuild at the same size, Glorioso said a smaller pool might be a more logical option.

"That pool is so big and to fix it means we'd probably have to take out the whole deep end," he said. "We have to ask if it's better to just take a bulldozer to all of it."

Glorioso credited Cleveland Alderman Robert Sanders for his continued effort to explain the issues with citizens living in the area.

"He's done a lot to help communicate the problems we're experiencing," Glorioso said. "I can't thank him enough for helping people understand we're doing everything we can to fix this as quick as possible."