The Rose State College swimming pool closed for the holidays in late December and, pending extensive repairs, hasn't reopened, leaving some members of the community uncertain where to go in the meantime.
Initially, Rose State College Aquatics Center announced it would remain closed "due to unforeseen repairs" until at least Jan. 18. But on Jan. 5, facility employees retracted that time frame, and on Monday said there was "no estimated reopening date at this time."
Chris Leland, director of health and wellness at Rose State College, said Aquatics Center employees wanted to be cautious and not announce, and then extend reopening dates.
"It's the fact that we just got back from Christmas break last week, and getting all of the necessary meetings that need to occur between the athletic director and the president of the college and the person that handles all of the money, and things of that nature," Leland said.
Staff drained the 25-meter, six-lane indoor swimming pool so they could assess tile issues at the bottom. After discovering damage to the tile was more extensive than first thought, the team decided it was in the interest of public safety to close the pool until further notice.
"We've got to find the funds to allocate this repair, and then we've got to actually find somebody to do the repairs," Leland said. "And they have to then obtain all of the materials and everything else, so we don't want to throw a date out there as a preliminary date until we have a good idea."
Leland emphasized the pool closure was temporary, after rumors spread on social media that it might be permanent.
"We know that once we throw a date out there, that's going to be on everybody's mind, and in doing so, we don't want to say, 'Oh, you know what? The shipping of the tile that's coming in from wherever has been delayed because of port issues' and things like that," Leland said. "We don't want to have to go back, and back, and back on that date, so we're waiting patiently until we get a better idea of an actual concrete date."
Swimming teams within the Mid-Del Public Schools District, like Carl Albert and Midwest City middle and high schools, frequent the Aquatics Center.
"Typically we do go to Rose State to practice, and if there is a home meet, then it's done at Rose State," said Kelly Ross, site secretary of athletics at Mid-Del Public Schools. "But there hasn't been any discussion of practice elsewhere."
Bradley Barrick, executive director of communications and public relations for Rose State College, said residents who routinely swim at the Aquatics Center might instead use facilities at Midwest City's YMCA, which has an indoor, 25-yard-long pool with four lanes.
OKC restaurants that opened and closed in 2021, with a sneak peek at what's coming in 2022
And while the Aquatics Center will remain closed for the time being, the rest of Rose State College's Wellness Center is still available. The Wellness Center offers a variety of fitness equipment, recreational activities and exercise classes.
But until all of the i's are dotted and the t's are crossed, Leland said, the Aquatics Center cannot reopen.
"We're not going to say that we'll be reopened as of a specific date when we don't have any of the preliminary information yet," Leland said.
This article originally appeared on Oklahoman: Rose State College Aquatics Center closes temporarily