GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT News)-- Recent conversation has sparked over what will happen to the Orchard Mesa community pool.
Since students have moved into their new facility, the old Orchard Mesa Middle School building sits empty. The old school building is expected to be torn down this Spring and some say they are worried a community staple will come with it.
Swimmers like Mary Mastin say the pool is used by many.
“My concerns are that there has been little transparency in what will happen to the pool,” says Mastin, “It provides programs for teenagers programs for veterans,”
Pamela Salazar says it’s been crucial for giving young ones a place to splash around.
“This is one of the few facilities where the kids can swim all year long,” says Salazar, “This would be a terrible loss for this community,”
According to information from the city, District 51 owns the pool and pays for the utilities. The city operates it and splits the remaining operational costs with the county. The pool board is the entity that brings all three of these groups together.
“It was thought that D51 would turn over this property to Parks and Rec because they basically have run it and that’s what we had all thought until about two weeks ago,” says Mastin.
Back in 2017, according previous reports from D51, it was said that the gym and pool buildings would remain intact, with only the demolition of the school building.
Right now, the fate of the pool is up in the air. The pool board will soon be deciding what to do, but is said to be considering all options. After speaking with Parks and Recreation, they said that they could not make a statement at this time regarding whether closing the pool is being considered.
“I don’t think people know because I swim here every day and I didn’t realize we were in severe jeopardy to lose this pool,” says Salazar.
“They need to hear from the people that use the pool,” says Mastin.
Built in the early 1980’s, it’s the only indoor community pool in Grand Junction that’s open throughout the year.
In the past voters have struck down the proposal to build a recreation center in Grand Junction.
The pool board is meeting Jan 28 to discuss the matter. Pool board meetings are usually not open to the public because there is no quorum of an elected body.