MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

January 26, 2013

NSU pool to remain closed


— TAHLEQUAH — With the rennovation of the Northeastern State University Fitness Center under way, one question is most asked: What about the pool?

The pool has been closed since Sept. 17, 2012, after state inspection revealed a series of issues to address — painting the pool surface and a deck in disrepair. Lifeguard stations, 911 access and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance were also declared inadequate.

After lengthy deliberation within the Division of Operations and with the project architect, the administration at NSU made the decision not to reopen the pool before the renovation work begins on the Fitness Center.

According to Tim Foutch, vice president for operations, the university is concerned about the uncertainty of the water quality, safety of patrons, additional costs and numerous issues involved with bringing students and patrons into a construction zone.

The pool will remain closed until all renovation work is complete. It is anticipated that the entire renovation should be completed by August 2014.

The $5 million renovation-expansion of the Fitness Center will require the relocation of fitness center equipment, intramural programs and classes to temporary locations during the construction phase.  Additional information about temporary facilities and the renovation timetables should be completed and announced by mid-March.

Jerry Cook, interim executive director of university relations, said the university is committed to providing safe and modern facilities for students and community patrons.

“We regret the major interruptions in service that these upgrades and renovations create,” Cook said in the release. “However when the pool and the Fitness Center reopen, we anticipate that everyone will appreciate the significant investment NSU is making at our Tahlequah campus.”

NSU maintains an online page explaining its master plan — the long-range vision for the university — at www.nsuok.edu/

masterplan.