The Cougar Pool at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has reopened after a month of technical problems delayed the community pool’s launch.
Workers filled the pool last month in anticipation of opening Memorial Day, but were surprised when water levels dropped 15 inches overnight. City workers found a significant leak in the pipe system that draws water into the filters and recirculates it back into the pool.
Eventually the city used the same repair system they have used on sewer lines and manholes to line the interior surface of the pipes with a quarter-inch of sealant, which prevented them from having to excavate. The pool officially opened Monday, and Hayley Verheyen, of the parks and recreation department, said people have been showing up.
“All is well; everything is fixed,” Verheyen said. “We’re about a month behind, but we’re excited to be open now.”
City Public Works Director Eric Williams has estimated that the repair costs will be about $30,000.
The pool is located on the campus of SIUE, but leased to the city of Edwardsville, which operates it as a municipal pool in cooperation with Glen Carbon, for $2,001. The single dollar is the actual lease; the $2,000 goes to the parking department to keep the parking lot free for pool visitors.
Verheyen said the pool will be open all Fourth of July weekend, including July 4 itself. “A lot of places are closed on the Fourth, but we will be open,” she said.
The pool, which includes a slide and “splash pad” area for younger children, sits at the end of an access road off a parking lot. The fenced-in pool overlooks Cougar Lake and its adjacent picnic areas.