Public Works Director Kyle Potthoff told the Parks Advisory Board that the company he had been working with on the project had apparently gone out of business. Potthoff explained Thursday afternoon that the new company he was working with would be targeting a mid-to-late pool season completion, as a "best- case" scenario.
The designs for the project have changed from constructing two smaller slides to the construction of a larger single slide. The slide is now projected to be just over 19 feet high and 140 feet long, requiring the pumping of 800 gallons of water a minute.
Potthoff said he was concerned about the pumping requirement of the new design, as the company has proposed it be tied into the existing water pumping system at the pool. Potthoff said he didn't believe the existing system could handle an additional 800 gallons so he has asked the design company for stand-alone pumping system options, similar to what the former company had provided.
Board member Michelle Gonzales said she thought the slide was a good thing for the pool, but added that she was concerned with the pool not being open at times. "They seem to shut down a lot when they could be open," said Gonzales. Potthoff replied that city staff would keep a close eye on it and said he would be truly surprised if the pool could ever get to a profitable position.
The McCook swimming pool will also be purchasing portable handicap accessibility equipment to comply with new Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, according to Potthoff. The new equipment is estimated to cost $6,000 and will have the ability to be easily moved in order to meet requirements for both the larger and medium sized pool at the location. Lifting capacity is estimated to be at 450 pounds for the new equipment.
The slide at Norris Park was removed after the manufacturer, Landscape Structures, informed city staff it no longer met safety requirements. Potthoff explained to the parks board that the manufacturer had informed him the slide was previously classified as a glider, intended to simulate the effect of sliding down a bannister handrail. They had communicated that recent changes to safety guidelines reclassified the piece of playground equipment to that of a slide, which resulted in it no longer meeting requirements.
Potthoff said the manufacturer had offered three reimbursement options and set a 90 day timeframe for the decision.
The first option, which Potthoff thought might be the best option considering the need to upgrade playground equipment at Felling Field, is a $4,000 credit towards purchases within the next year. Option two is a check for $2,000 and option three is a $1,000 check combined with one of two replacement pieces. Both replacement pieces were playground equipment items already in place at Norris Park.
The board planned to visit the company's website, www.playlsi.com, to view playground equipment options and then make a decision on how to proceed at a later date. Interested parties may provide input to any Parks Advisory Board members or by contacting Potthoff via his email, email@example.com.
Landscape Structures issued an official manufacturers recall pertaining to the slide on Monday, just a few days after city staff removed the slide. The recall of the "Slalom Glider" was in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and stated an approximate 900 units were sold between 2006 and 2011. According to the recall the commission has received 16 reports of injuries to children under the age of 8, including one bruised spleen, one fractured collar bone and 14 fractures to arms and legs.
Potthoff informed the Parks Advisory Board that a $110,000 grant for the third phase of the walking trail was approved by the Nebraska Game and Parks Commissioners in January. The third phase will extend the trail south from East H Street for approximately 1200 feet. Five property owners will need to grant permission for the city to utilize a portion of their property, according to Potthoff, who said it will be a couple of years before the project begins.
The dog park that is planned for East 11th and C Streets will use fencing from the airport that will be replaced by the construction of the new wildlife fence. Potthoff said the dog park is on hold until the airport wildlife fence project moves further along. City staff have already set aside a couple of benches and other items for the approximately one city block area the dog park will encompass, which is not anticipated to require any grading.