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New pool could cost Madison millions of dollars

MADISON, Ala. - No one in the Madison City Council disputes that Madison needs a new pool, and it would mean a lot to some 400 swimmers and their families. But there's still a question about how it's going to happen.

Monday, the council explored possible solutions.

Option 1 is a cover to go over Dublin Park's outdoor pool during the colder seasons. The project includes updated water heating. City Administrator to the Mayor Taylor Edge said this option would cost around $420,000.

"We could literally start tomorrow," said council member Maura Wroblewski.

"It's not a bad deal to solve a short-term 4-5 year problem by spending $400,000," commented Mayor Paul Finley.

Option 2 is building a second indoor pool at Dublin as an extension of the building that exists now. This would cost $4,977,500.

Option 3 is a new Aquatics Facility featuring 10-lane pool. The problem there: it would cost $10.5 million that the city and school board don't have.

"It's a permanent solution for our swim community. That's the pro. The cons are purely financial," commented Edge.

While Finley believes it's best to move forward with a less-expensive option until they have more time, and funds, to come up with longer-term options, council member Steve Smith said it's best to bite the bullet.

"We don't need to just put a Band-aid over it," he said, "because a Band-aid won't fix anything. The Band-aid is going to be more costly long-term than spending the extra money now and getting it done the right way."

There are lots more work to be done, and the council and board of education still need to come to a consensus about this issue after their discussion Monday. But they agree it's time to have this step forward, and these options were the right way to start.

"We want the pool community and the swim community to know, we really are serious about helping them solve their problem," said Finley.