TEXAS SWIMMING

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Irving ISD Aquatics at a Crossroads


The troubling headline says it all:

Irving's First Indoor Swimming Pool Circles the Drain

Read more on the future of the North Lake Aquatic Center here.

Three decades after it opened, Irving’s first indoor pool has chips in the walls, cracks in the deck and yellow spots on the white dome roof.

But the North Lake Aquatic Center also has clear water and Olympic-length lanes. And the city and school district still have no better place to hold daily lessons, classes and competitions.

They may soon need one. Tired of paying upkeep and repairs for a rundown pool it hardly uses, North Lake College will begin to phase the structure out after 2014.

The pool’s main customers, the city and Irving ISD, will have to pay to take over the natatorium if they want to keep using it. And they’ll need to find somewhere else to swim by 2020, when North Lake plans to drain the pool for good.

The bubble-roofed box opened on campus to much fanfare in 1985 — a partnership between North Lake, the city and the school district.

Finally, Irving had a competitive-class pool, and the school district swim team didn’t need to shiver through winter practice outside the YMCA.

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