MILLINOCKET – With constant and chilling winds battering town officials breaking ground Monday at the site of the town’s new outdoor community pool, Eugene Conlogue couldn’t help smiling.
“I was thinking,” Conlogue said, “of the Polar Bear Club.”
With construction of the $1.4 million pool due to start today, the town manager said he was pretty sure that the pool would be finished in time for summer, when hopefully the weather -and presumably, the water in the pool – will be a good deal warmer than it was Monday.
The outdoor pool’s conceptual designs combine four racing lanes and a two-board diving area and also feature a toddler wading area with safety rails, a mushroom fountain, sloping sides and depths and a large slide.
Other touches include a gently curved roof with sunroof, a bathhouse with changing rooms and a large grass strip suitable for sunbathing or light outdoor recreation.
South Shore Gunite Pool & Spa Inc., of Chelmsford, Mass., will build the pool. Sullivan & Merritt Inc. of Bangor will build the bathhouse and handle the site work, electrical, plumbing, pool excavation and paving. Several local subcontractors and many local workers are expected to help.
Town Council Chairman David Nelson called the pool project a reaffirmation of town government’s commitment to investing in positive things that provide residents, particularly town youth, with a good quality of life.
“It says a lot about the optimism within the community that we had virtually unanimous support for the pool from the council and from within the community,” Nelson said Monday.
The pool project will stimulate local businesses and help draw new residents to the town, Nelson said.
The new pool will be a cornerstone to a well-rounded recreation complex that already includes a football stadium, baseball and softball diamonds and an outdoor hockey rink, said Thomas Malcolm, a member of the town recreation committee.