New pump coming for Franklin Pool, which could reopen within weeks

Published 2:23 pm Thursday, July 11, 2024

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By Buzz Trexler

Star Correspondent

It’s been a hot time in the city of Elizabethton, made more so for many people because the pool at the Joe LaPorte Recreation Facility has been closed for more than two weeks, but relief is said to be on the way.

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On June 24, the Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Department posted on one of its social media pages that Franklin Pool, 1600 Franklin Club Drive, would be closed due to mechanical issues. The department continued to provide updates, attempting to assure the public the pool was not closing permanently, but that this was a temporary issue; in fact, the city said, better days were coming for the pool and swimmers: “This closure is strictly for immediate repair, there are no discussions on closing this pool, in fact, renovations this year will see many great improvements!”

Elizabethton Parks and Recreation Director David Nanney said by email Wednesday the reason for the closure was the loss of pressure in the pool’s pump. “Rather than spending a large amount of money replacing the pump and motor system we currently have, we chose to replace the old system with the new one that is required in the plans of our pool renovation project, which is scheduled to take place in the next month or two,” he said.

In late 2023, First Tennessee Development District awarded a block grant of $630,000 to help fund improvements to Franklin Pool, including renovating the pool’s surfacing, installing new gutters, installing a heater, and a new chlorination system. The budget for the project is $1,153,948, with the city’s match being $523,948. The project is expected to be completed by December 2028.

“We were told that the pump system should ship to us sometime next week,” Nanney said. “As soon as we receive the equipment, we will work to install it as soon as possible. Hopefully, we will be up and running in the next three weeks and be able to operate the pool for a couple of additional weekends before renovations begin.”