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Smith pool to reopen next week

Charlottesville’s Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center will reopen next week on May 31, the city recently announced.

The center has been closed since May 2020 for a $1.8 million ventilation and air distribution improvement project.

The city said in March 2020 that the project would improve the air quality and ventilation of the more than 27,000-square-foot facility, and maintain building and infrastructure integrity by mitigating corrosion factors prevalent in indoor aquatic venues.

That project was supposed to wrap up in early fall 2020, according to the initial announcement.

The $11.2 million center has experienced ongoing issues since opening in 2010, including periodic closings. The exhaust systems were replaced in 2015, which cost nearly $342,000.

At that time, a city staff memo pointed to design flaws in the building as a potential problem, including the facility’s ventilation, pool water treatment and heating systems and other issues that were linked to poor health, hazardous air quality and structural corrosion.

The Smith center, located at 1000-A Cherry Avenue, includes a six-lane indoor lap pool, water slide and a lazy river, among other amenities. The facility will be open daily, starting June 6.

Until then, the hours of operation will be 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. from May 31 to June 2 and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. June 3. The center will be closed June 4 and June 5.

Outdoor pool passes will be valid at the Smith facility this summer, according to the news release.


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