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Alexandria Studying Expansion of Chinquapin Rec Center Aquatics Facilities

Alexandria City Council identified building a 50-meter pool as a priority in its capital improvement plan this spring.

Chinquapin Park Recreation Center is located at 3210 King St. (Patch file photo).
Chinquapin Park Recreation Center is located at 3210 King St. (Patch file photo).

Alexandria is studying the feasibility of building a 50-meter indoor competition swimming pool as part of an expansion of the Chinquapin Park Recreation Center, located at 3210 King St.

The study will look at renovations to the existing pool to convert it into a recreation pool with additional features and amenities.

Alexandria City Council identified building a 50-meter pool as a priority in its capital improvement plan this spring. 

During a work session concerning the city’s aquatics plan in May, Councilwoman Del Pepper and other members of the city’s swimming community called the construction of Chinquapin in 1985 without a 50-meter pool a mistake.

Members of Advocates for Alexandria Aquatics, a group seeking to raise $3 to $5 million and partner with the city to create new aquatics facilities, have said there’s a need for a competition-sized 50-meter pool within the city. Such a pool could open up new revenue streams for the city by hosting meets and other events.

The city is seeking input from citizens about its Chinquapin study through an online survey. The deadline to complete the survey is Nov. 29.

Chinquapin reopened Nov. 1 after it was closed for more than four months for repairs.

Larry McDorchester November 19, 2013 at 08:59 AM
Keep Warwick Pool open!
Tom November 19, 2013 at 12:22 PM
after taking four months to repair the HVAC system, i can only imagine how long it would take to double the pool size.
Anthony Smith November 20, 2013 at 11:00 AM
Sounds like it would be a new pool, with the old pool being renovated into a rec pool.
WestEnder November 20, 2013 at 04:27 PM
Other than the omnipresent issue of higher taxes, I have no bone in this issue personally. But I ask Alexandrians, is is worth reminding ourselves that Arlington County has already in the works a 50 mm indoor pool with 700 viewing seats at Long Bridge Park near Crystal City Metro? You now, the one with four regulation lit outdoor sports fields, with ample parking and limited residential impact by the distance of apartment setback? I draw attention to this because of the above: "Members of Advocates for Alexandria Aquatics, a group seeking to raise $3 to $5 million and partner with the city to create new aquatics facilities, have said there’s a need for a competition-sized 50-meter pool within the city. Such a pool COULD open up new revenue streams for the city by hosting meets and other events" (emphasis added). It will be difficult from a business perspective for both Arlington and Alexandria to cull from the same private or possibly public swim clubs for their revenue sources. Will this entice Chinquapin Parks and Rec to raise rates on Alexandrians for general exercise usage above what they are willing to pay? Such has been intimated at Council Meetings with Parks and Rec when discussing revenue There are a plethora of good local private exercise clubs around at very reasonable rates and contracts. In the end, one 50 mm competitive pool with vast spectator seating in a five to seven mile radius is probably all that can be expected to pull the private clubs draw (money) and perhaps the public clubs/organizations draw. Discussion of this seems very reasonable at this time, given our City's budgetary issues. Omitting a 50 mm pool at Chinquapin (but maintaining the new/old) will also free up money for pools throughout the City. Having our schools swim team utilize the Crystal City facility (via rent, as other teams are sure to do) may be disappointing, but not result in a perpetual net deficit on City finances.

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