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Regional Aquatics Center Proposed In Lexington

Stu Johnson

Lexington city officials are exploring the possibility of establishing a regional aquatics center in the central Kentucky community.  City council members got briefed on one option last week.

Parks and Recreation Director Monica Conrad spelled out the proposal for an aquatics facility at Shillito Park.  Among other things, it could feature slides, a lazy river feature, and a splash pad.  Council Member Richard Moloney suggested considering other locations in other parts of Lexington.  Council Member Amanda Mays Bledsoe said the Aquatics Master Plan calls for expansion of swimming recreation. 

“We need more aquatics centers.  There’s a desert out in Hamburg.  There’s a desert in Masterson Station and Versailles area.  Those were all definitely next on the list, once we have land acquired and have funding, said Mays Bledsoe.

Conrad said the $10 million price tag includes a reconstructed lap pool. Conrad noted layout modifications are certainly possible.   “The project can be designed or changed to meet what we feel are the priorities of the project.  If that’s the warm pool, or a lazy river, or bubbling instead of a lazy river.  You know I think that there’s many iterations of the plan that could occur,” said Conrad. 

More than one council member asked about a bubble cover at the center.  Conrad said the entrance fee is proposed to go from five to seven dollars.  She added revenues and expenses are projected to increase along with attendance.    

Also planned for the Shillito Park area is a $10-million-dollar Senior Therapeutic Center.  No funding decisions have been made for either project. 

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