March 11, 2022 5:20 PM
Posted: March 11, 2022 5:20 PM
YAKIMA, Wash. — The City of Yakima is moving forward with efforts to build an outdoor community swimming pool at Martin Luther King Jr. Park. with new funding from the state.
Community members have been voicing the need for an outdoor pool in East Yakima for years and in 2019, the city conducted a study to determine whether the pool was a feasible option.
“That process included doing some preliminary design work and some preliminary cost estimates, but really, the project didn’t advance much further than that,” city spokesperson Randy Beehler said.
But this week, state lawmakers approved a supplemental capital budget for the next two years that included $1 million for the proposed Martin Luther King Jr. Park Pool.
READ: Study finds proposed outdoor pool in East Yakima could cost upward of $7 million
“That million dollars will pay for final design work, bid specification developments for the project and some other technical elements that will allow the city to kind of take the next step,” Beehler said.
Beehler said that step should be complete by the end of the year. He said after that, they’ll be seeking bids for construction and will move the process forward as quickly as they can – with the goal of opening the pool in 2024.
“A community pool is not only an opportunity for recreation, an opportunity to cool down in the summertime, but it’s also an opportunity to teach water safety to kids and families,” Beehler said. “And that is every bit as important as the recreation aspect of a community pool.”
The two-year state supplemental capital budget includes funding for several other projects and organizations in Yakima County, including:
- $3.2 million for the Northwest Harvest food bank in Yakima
- $250,000 for the Town of Naches Mobile Stage
- $70,000 for the Yakima Valley Trolleys Bucket Truck in Yakima
- $50,000 for the Naches rearing pond
- $10,000 for Yakima County Fire District 12 in Yakima
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