Update On Status Of White Center’s Evergreen Pool From Whitewater Aquatics


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We recently received an update on the status of White Center’s Evergreen Pool from the folks at Whitewater Aquatics, and the most current info we have is that Whitewater made a presentation to the Highline School Board last week.

The basics from their Powerpoint presentation (download link here):

  • Whitewater needs more funding to re-open the pool in March 2010.
  • If Whitewater can reach agreement with the Highline School District (HSD) to manage the pool, it will be opened to all members of the community for swim lessons, senior exercise, family swims and swim teams.
  • If Whitewater does not take over operation of Evergreen Pool, the mothballed facility will revert to HSD in March 2010 presumably still closed and in need of repairs. The funds committed by King County to repair and re-open the pool could be lost.
  • Whitewater has privately raised $50,000 to fund our operating costs as we open and re-establish operations.

Here are the details from their presentation we received via email from Julie Dow:

Ed Marrs presented the attached to The Highline School Board this week, on behalf of the parents of Whitewater Swim Club and our efforts to save Evergreen Pool . We’re in our “11-th hour” but, yet, remain optimistic. The county is trying to help, but time is ticking. The school board is deciding. We need to get the pool open by March to succeed with our plan, we’ve raised quite a bit of money privately, we need to move quickly.

HISTORY OF EVERGREEN POOL

  • Evergreen Pool was one of the many area pools funded by “Forward Thrust” bonds.
  • Ownership of the pool reverts to HSD from King County in March 201o.
  • King County closed the pool September 1, 2009, but has approved budgeted funds for needed repairs and contingency.
  • The pool and surrounding ball fields were “excluded” from the annexation area of Burien, the city choosing instead to allow these resources to revert to The Highline School District.
  • Whitewater Swim Club (established in 2002) has been working for nearly a year to form and fund a not-for-profit llc, WWAM to manage the pool.
  • Due to re-organization of County Execs office, the county has decided not to work on a lease of only 3 months, instead asking WWAM to work directly with HSD.

WHO IS WHITEWATER AQUATICS MANAGEMENT LLC?

  • We are a non-profit group formed by leaders of our community for the sole purpose of operating Evergreen Pool in a private-public partnership. Our detailed business plan is attached to this summary.
  • We have privately raised $50,000 to fund our operating costs as we open and re-establish operations.
  • We have worked extensively over the last year to secure community support, $300,000 in funding from King County and to build a coalition that will re-open this valuable community resource. We seek to open the pool to meet immediate community needs and to be part of a long term solution for this asset.
  • We manage a separate entity, Whitewater Swim Club, a not-for-profit swim club which is governed by a parent board of directors and professionally managed. We are sanctioned by USA Swimming and have over 70 youths age 7-21 on our team. Several of our swimmers compete on Highline High and Mt. Rainier High Swim Teams. The swim club will pay for its pool time to the LLC which manages the pool.

WHAT ARE HSD’s OPTIONS?

  • If WWAM can reach agreement with HSD to manage the pool, the pool will be opened to all members of the community for swim lessons, senior exercise, family swims and swim teams.
  • If WWAM does not take over operation of Evergreen Pool, the mothballed facility will revert to HSD in March 2010 presumably still closed and in need of repairs. The funds committed by King County to repair and re-open the pool could be lost.


WHY EVERGREEN MATTERS

  • A positive youth activity.
  • An economically challenged neighborhood, White Center, needs good alternatives.
  • A “no cut” sport that is inclusive to all, from the disabled to the competitive.
  • We are surrounded by water. The death rate from drowning is nearly twice the national average in low income areas.
  • Creating life long fitness and activity habits and impacting child obesity rates.

WHAT WILL EVERGREEN OFFER W/WWAM AS MANAGER?

  • Community and Family Swim time
  • Senior Citizen Water Exercise and Social Programs
  • Lifeguard Training
  • Swimming Lessons for Children, including free or low cost lessons for low income families
  • Competitive Swim Club for youth ages seven to twenty one, including athletes from Highline Schools
  • Training for tri athletes and adult competitors
  • Water Safety Instruction for boating and general safety
  • Scuba Certification Training
  • Adult Exercise and Swim Lessons

WWAM IS ASKING HSD FOR:

  • Ten year “lease” at $1.00 per year.
  • No financial support from the district.
  • A contact person with HSD who is empowered to work with WWAM toward mutual goals.
  • An agreement in place in the near term. To meet the income requirements of a solid business plan, the pool must be open for the “busy” spring lesson season, not later than March 1, 2010.
  • Assistance in involving municipalities to provide a long term plan for the pool and area needs.
  • Hold capital contingency funds provided by the county in a reserve to be used as needed.

A COMMUNITY OF SUPPORTERS

  • Dow Constantine
  • North Highline Area Unincorporated Council
  • 34th District Democrats

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