FORT LEE, Va. (June 30, 2016) -- Fort Lee’s Battle Drive Pool will finally open for some summer fun Saturday.
Typically starting it season on Memorial Day weekend, the pool’s opening was delayed by ongoing construction, said Diana Martinez, the Family and MWR Aquatics and Wellness Program manager.
“We are currently renovating the pool,” she said. “The deck was redone, the pump house was renovated, and there were a lot of plumbing upgrades to help the pool work better.”
The pool will be open from July 2 - Sept. 5. On Sept. 6, it will be closed until the end of October, so workers can finish the bathrooms, install the dome and make sure everything is working properly.
“We are looking at reopening around the Halloween timeframe, and then the pool will be open year-round,” said Martinez.
The pool will be open Tuesday - Sunday, noon - 7:30 p.m. The hours are shorter due to staffing issues.
“We are short on staff, but we are in the process of hiring more,” said Martinez. “The hours could increase once we have more lifeguards trained, but at the moment, we have limited hours.
“Unfortunately, this is what we have to work with,” she continued. “We can’t have the lifeguards work overtime because it creates a safety issue. It’s important that we keep the pool safe for the Fort Lee community.”
Additionally, swimming lessons are not scheduled to be offered this summer because of the delayed opening and staffing issues. However, once the pool opens full time, Martinez said she fully expects to be able to offer swimming lessons at different times throughout the year.
Pool patrons will see at least one improvement this summer. The deck has been upgraded and features concrete with a gripping surface to reduce slipping. Martinez said they encourage people to wear flip flops or some type of swim shoes, and they will be enforcing the no- running rule to ensure people stay safe.
Future construction of the pool dome has necessitated the removal of the slide and diving board. Additionally, construction is set to continue through the summer to prepare it to become a year-round facility, and some amenities – such as the volleyball courts and the pavilion – will not be accessible.
Martinez said it’s worth the sacrifice for a short time to receive the long-term benefits of a year-round pool.
The daily rate for the pool is $3. The individual season fee rate for E-1 though E-4 is $45, and $65 for all others. The family season fee rate for E-1 through E-4 is $65, and $80 for all others.