After weeks of uncertainty, the final word is that the Doyle Street Pool in Toccoa will not open this summer.
Toccoa-Stephens County YMCA CEO Robin Dake said that the YMCA and city officials reached that mutual decision at a meeting Monday morning.
Dake said multiple issues continue to cause problems that cannot be resolved in a manner to get the pool open this summer.
“One of the realities is that we are losing about 40,000 gallons of water a day through the leaks,” said Dake. “There are several leaks involved. That is a lot of water, a lot of chemicals. Most importantly though, that makes it impossible to keep the chemicals at a safe level.”
The YMCA, which has operated the pool yearly for the city of Toccoa, planned to open it around Memorial Day.
However soon after Memorial Day, Dake had said pump and leak issues at the pool would keep it from opening.
Then last month, Toccoa City Commissioner Gail Fry announced that Patterson Pump had fixed the pump and that the city felt it could resolve the leak issues. Fry said they were hopeful the pool would open.
Dake said that while those repairs helped the situation, problems just kept coming up.
“The pool is almost 70 years old, so it had a cascading effect,” said Dake. “When we solved one issue, another issue popped up and then another and another. The leak issue, we were concerned at the beginning about it. But our hope was that it would resolve itself once all of these other problems had been solved. Unfortunately, those leaks did not resolve themselves.”
Dake said that the decision is a very disappointing one for everybody involved.
“Mostly, we are disappointed for the kids that really enjoy it, for the folks who take water aerobics, those who are looking forward to swimming lessons,” said Dake. “That is our deep disappointment, not being able to serve the citizens and the folks who use the pool. We are sorry that it took us so long to figure it out. I do want to say we wanted to make sure we tried every avenue and a whole team of people looked at all of the issues and we had to come to the conclusion that it could not be solved.”
While the pool will not open this year, multiple Toccoa City Commissioners have expressed interest in allocating SPLOST VI money, if SPLOST is approved, for pool renovations.
Dake said the YMCA supports such improvements.
“We are excited as to the future of hopefully having an upgraded facility where the YMCA can continue to partner with the city of Toccoa and have a really nice facility for the citizens,” said Dake.
Dake went on to say that the YMCA appreciates all of the support from the city, Patterson Pump, and all involved regarding the pool this year.