Forks plunges into future of empty public pool

FORKS — What do you do with an empty pool that voters don’t want to pay to fill?

A meeting on Wednesday night to discuss the future of the Quillayute Valley Aquatics Center gave the organizers many ideas — and much investigation — left to be done.

About 35 people attended the meeting for the Quillayute Valley Park and Recreation District at the Department of Natural Resources conference room, 411 Tillicum Lane.

The Quillayute Valley Aquatic Center opened in July 2005 after voters approved a $2.9 million bond to build it in 2000, and closed in September 2006 after two maintenance and operation levy measures failed.

Another measure, which would have created a new taxing district — a metropolitan park and recreation district — to fund pool operation was voted down in November by a margin of about 65 percent to 35 percent.

The cost of reopening the pool would be about $360,000, and it would not be able to be self-sustaining, Mayor Nedra Reed said.

Ideas of what to do with the pool broached Wednesday included everything from filling it with sand, putting a sub-floor down and renting the building out, to asking Stephenie Meyer — author of a series of vampire novels set in Forks — to contribute to a foundation to support the pool long-term.

“It is really soon after the meeting to determine which ideas are feasible,” said Sandra Carter, one of two remaining district board members, Thursday.

“The ideas need some thinking about and research.

“We definitely have some ideas to pursue, but it is really clear that this will be a long-term effort.”

The current commission is made up of only Carter and Deb Anderson.

Three board positions are vacant because no one chose to run for those positions.

Before a decision can be made on the pool, volunteers for board positions and an advisory committee must come forward, Carter said.

In addition to volunteers, a suggestion was made to forge an agreement with another governmental or private entity.

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