What is the status of the Moana Springs Aquatic Center?
Following a decade and a half of efforts the Moana Springs Aquatic and Fitness center is now a reality! The City of Reno has engaged the design team and work is underway to finalize the design and move toward groundbreaking. Final cost estimating will be completed soon to determine the exact amount of additional funding still required to reach the goal of inclusion several improvements to the approved facility plan, including the expansion of the main pool to allow for use as a 50 meter (Olympic) pool. The lead donor for the project has been secured with the Conditional Pledge Committment of $9 Million made by the William N, Pennighton Foundation which was accepted by the Reno City Council in August of 2019. The City of Reno has subsequently committed $10 Million and is continuing efforts in coordination with SNCA to secure additional major commitments from foundations and local businesses prior to initiating a final public capital campaign. Total current commitments are slightly in excess of $20 Million ensuring a high quality well designed modern aquatics facility will be moving forward. However, additional funding is still required to cover cost escalations and additional features to maximize the aquatics opportunities for the community and provide a venue that will be a crown jewel in the regions recreational and quality of life offerings. If you or your business is prepared to make a comittment to this effort please see our Support Us page or Contact Us to learn how you can help.
Has Sierra Nevada Community Aquatic (SNCA) tried to partner with or garner land from any other governmental or private groups other than the City of Reno?
SNCA has met with the City of Reno, City of Sparks, Washoe County and several private parties in relation to potential locations for an aquatic center. While there is ultimately a need for more than one aquatic center in the region, SNCA has focused on the Moana site due its renewable energy resources (geothermal & solar), central and accesible location, and the coordination with other recreational features. Long range plans include efforts to facilitate the development of additional aquatics facilities in the region including possibilities in South Reno, the North Valleys, Sparks and in coordination with UNR as indicated in the recreational faciliites anyalysis completed by the City of Reno in 2008. SNCA's ultimate goal is to facilitate the expansion of aquatic resources in the region and we are hopeful the success of the Moana Springs project will enable additional despeartely needed facilities to be developed.
What will the Moana Springs Aquatic and Fitness Center be like?
Is there any ongoing desire to expand the scope of aquatics and therefore increase support? Examples would be diving, water polo and kayaking.
It is the goal of SNCA to include all aquatic users. We want to see everyone involved and see that all types of groups and individuals are able to benefit from a facility. We do not want to limit our scope to competitive swimming, as there are so many other types of aquatic sports and recreational uses. SNCA would like to invite all users to participate and to help us reach of goal of creating and maintaining facilities that cater to all types of needs, from swimming, diving and kayaking to swim classes, lessons and water therapy. The proposed facility is diverse and contains multiple pools and a general fitness area to meet the needs of all users. If you are interested in participating and/or feel that you have a unique view or input, please contact us! We want to make sure that all aquatic users feel they are represented.
Why not just put a bubble over Idlewild Pool or better yet enclose the pool in a new structure?
The cost of a bubble would in fact be fairly reasonable and SNCA has considered this as an option. When we explored this option, we ran into the following challenges:
There are fairly significant and costly improvements that would need to be made to the facility and deck in order to make the enclosure work.
The current locker rooms are not designed with year round operation in mind and would need to be upgraded if used throughout the winter. Swimmers would also have to walk from the locker rooms outside and then enter the seasonal bubble.
The primary population served by this solution would be the competitive groups as there would be little motivation for other users to visit the facility given the challenges noted above.
The operations would be costly and the pool is already an operational loss for the City. They would currently be unable to accept even greater losses that would be created with year round operations.
Some of these challenges could be overcome with the construction of a permanent structure over the pool, however our investigation found issues with this scenario as well.
There is significant concern with spending millions of dollars constructing a building around an aging pool that was rebuilt in 1985. When the cost of correcting deferred maintenance and programming issues are considered, the cost is nearly the same as starting from scratch with a new facility. It would be preferable to invest any funds raised toward the effort to construct a new facility which would still leave Idlewild as a viable seasonal pool.
I noticed that a plan shown on the website contained multiple pools; would it be a lot easier and less expensive to build a single pool?
While the costs of a single pool would certainly be less than the multi-pool complex proposed, there are a number of reasons we have designed the complex to incorporate multiple bodies of water.
We have attended several workshops, sought advice from multiple professionals, and read numerous publications related to modern pool facility design and operations. The consistent message is that the key to successful operations of an aquatic facility is the programming that can be handled by the facility. While it is possible to operate a small single purpose facility for a specific purpose (i.e. swim school or therapy pool) the key to successful operation of a community pool is the ability to run multiple types of programming at the same time.
The wide variety of aquatic users have varied needs in features, entrances, depths, and temperature that are only met with multiple pools. Our current design reflects the most efficient and cost effective to both construct and operate that will meet the diverse demands of the community's aquatic user groups and project stakeholders.
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