The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

May 17, 2013

Schifferdecker water park opening delayed week or two

From staff reports
news@joplinglobe.com

— Wet spring weather has delayed work on the Schifferdecker Aquatic Center, and it will not open over Memorial Day weekend, city officials said Friday.

No date was given for the expected opening, but it could be delayed one to two weeks, according to Chris Cotten, Joplin parks and recreation director.

The Ewert and Cunningham Family Aquatic Centers will open Saturday, May 25.

In a statement released by the city, Cotten said much of the final work at the water park required longer periods of dry weather than the area has experienced this spring.

“Schifferdecker is going to be an incredible facility,” Cotten said in a statement.

A contract for construction of the water park was approved last fall by the Joplin City Council. The contract was awarded to R.E. Smith Construction Co. and the final cost will be around $5.3, which is below the $5.8 million that engineers estimated it would take to put the new pool in Schifferdecker Park.

The old pool, which had two diving boards in a designated diving area, also had a separate wading pool for children and a separate pool for swimming with competition lanes. It closed at the end of the season last August and was demolished to make way for the new pool.

Built in 1976, the old pool also leaked in a number of places, said Cotten.

The new water park at Fourth Street and Schifferdecker Avenue has a lazy river, multiple water slides, a low dive and a high dive, competition lanes and many other features.

Joplin residents were invited last year to an open house to leave suggestions for the type of aquatic center they wanted and the pool features. Most who came to the February meeting said they were there to support construction of a competition-style pool.

A recommendation to build the aquatic center came from public input received by a task force of local residents who devised a projects list based on revenue generated by a 10-year quarter-cent sales tax voters approved in 2011.