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Architects Present New Options for SplashDown

Repaired water slides may last four to five years.


The process of replacing the aging SplashDown at the Columbia Swim Center inched closer on Tuesday night as architects presented three new options to take the place of the waterslides.

The plans ranged in cost from $2 million to $9.5 million.

Williams Architects/Aquatics presented the options on Tuesday night at the Hawthorn Center along with plans for a new indoor pool.

The first option, priced between $2 million and $3.1 million, would keep the swim center intact as is, but replace the SplashDown feature with one or two family-friendly features.

The second option involves remodeling the Swim Center's main pool area and building enclosure to make it more thermally efficient as well as adding a children's wading pool. The cost is estimated between $3.8 million to $4.2 million.

The last option, which the architecture firm labeled as the best, would replace the Swim Center with a new SplashDown and main pool enclosure. At a cost between $8.6 million and $9.5 million, it's by far the most expensive, but, according to the architects, would "provide a state-of-the-art family aquatic experience."

In addition to providing diagrams of each site layout, the architects also gave examples of the types of family friendly amenities that could be added to the Swim Center once SplashDown is removed. Those amenities include a spray play, new slides, a playground-like structure called an active play, three different types of children's activity pools, a swim channel and a family tree house.

At the meeting, Bob Bellamy, CA's director of sport and fitness, noted that SplashDown will re-open on Friday after receiving its latest round of repairs. Bellamy said the contractor hired by CA to fix the slides said they should last about four to five years.

CA has cited the cost of structural repairs and the declining use of the slides, which began operation in 1987, as the primary reasons for SplashDown's replacement.

The aquatics master plan, which was approved on June 14, will keep SplashDown open until either new family-friendly features are constructed or another major SplashDown component requires replacement, whichever occurs first.

Related Articles

  • SplashDown Nearing End of Useful Life
  • Columbia Association Presents Four $5 to $7 Million Indoor Pool Options
  • SplashDown Replacement Discussions to Take Place
  • Report: Four Outdoor Pools Being Considered for Enclosure
andrew gutenson February 09, 2013 at 11:57 PM
I absolutely vote for the last option. I love big water slides, especially the pitch black ones.


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