Wichita city pools will open for the season on Monday—with one controversial exception.
Over the next several years, six of Wichita’s pools will be converted to water playgrounds. But when city council members voted in February to adopt the new Aquatics Master Plan, one closure in particular stood out: McAdams pool, in central Wichita, was set to close immediately after the council's vote.
"I'm still looking at the fact that a pool is closing earlier than it was scheduled to close and nothing around it is open until 2020," Councilwoman Lavonta Williams, whose district includes McAdams Park, said during February's meeting. She referred to Edgemoor, the closest nearby pool, which has been closed for maintenance since 2012.
McAdams pool opened in 1953. It was designed by renowned Wichita architect Charles McAfee.
City officials said falling attendance and revenues influenced their decision: There were fewer than 4,000 visitors in 2016, and the facility brought in less than $6,000 last year.
McAdams will re-open as a water playground in 2019. Residents are holding a flash mob and rally at 8 a.m. Saturday at the pool in an effort to save it. Organizers say Charles McAfee will be in attendance.
KPTS' Positively Kansas spoke to Charles McAfee about the importance of McAdams pool (starts at 8:53).
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