June 18, 2020
Our residents waiting for an answer for the Pool on Pacific have been very patient during the evolving Covid-19 conditions. We are disappointed to inform you that the Pool on Pacific will not open this summer. The decision follows months of concerted effort to find a way to safely open within the required State of Illinois and Illinois Department of Public Health and National CDC guidelines, and serious consideration by staff and the Park District Board of Commissioners. Our plan was to open July 6 after the state enters Phase 4, allowing up to 50 individuals (40 patrons & 10 staff) to be at the facility. That would have allowed a five-week season. While this is not ideal, the effort was still made to provide residents with a much needed summer recreation opportunity.
Safety of residents and staff are the most important part of an aquatic facility. As of June 16, we had only thirteen lifeguards undergoing on-line and remote training. In a normal summer we have more than thirty lifeguards. We know that many had concerns about overall safety and chose not to return this summer or changed their minds during the training process. Ultimately this number of lifeguards does not provide the assurance that we can safely offer even the limited planned activity. The restrictions and guidelines also result in greatly reduced revenue and a significant loss that must be considered at a time that the Park District faces many fiscal challenges.
During the planning process we conducted a phone survey last week of 108 season pass holders from last summer. The results showed that 79% of those surveyed would be comfortable attending the pool. We appreciate the input from those residents and are certainly unhappy to then be unable to open the pool. For those interested, the full results of the survey and more details about the Pool on Pacific closing will be available on www.fpparks.org.
On behalf of our Aquatic Staff, thank you again for your patience and understanding during this difficult time. If you have questions, feel free to contact me directly.
Director of Parks & Recreation