PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The swimming pool at Ammon Recreation Center in the Hill District is 80-years-old and in need of repair. The city’s Parks and Recreation Department thought it was on track to do just that until last month.
City pools all across town were crowded Tuesday for the start of the summer swimming season.
But the Ammon Pool remains dry and shut down for the season. The pool needs new water filtration units that were ordered in time, but mistakenly shipped to the Middle East by the manufacturer.
“They are massive. If you think of a small submarine, like you might see on TV, there are five of these that filter the water continuously,” said Jim Griffin, of the Parks and Recreation Department.
The old units were removed earlier this spring in anticipation of the new, custom-made units which take six to eight weeks to make. Now they are somewhere at sea with no way to get them back.
“These were ordered back in the winter, and then in the spring, the Department of Public Works and CitiParks took out the old tanks, which had deteriorated significantly. How they end up on a ship to the Middle East is a mystery to us,” said Griffin. “They’re on a container ship, with thousands of other containers.”
The number of kids who use Ammon Pool has been declining. It was built to hold up to 900 kids, but these days, there are other options to the neighborhood swimming pool.
The city had hoped free admission for kids under 15 would help boost the numbers. There are several pools around two miles from the Ammon Pool, but there’s no money for a shuttle bus to help kids get to and from.
So, six to eight weeks to get the replacement order filled, and then shipped. There’s a chance the new filtration system will here just in time for… Labor Day.