"We received an estimate of $600,000 to replace the pool shell and plumbing. However, the contractor also determined it was too much of a liability and risk to actually complete the job given the surrounding structures. We opted not to pursue this option any further because of the risk factors. If we had gone through with this option the pool would have been temporarily closed for at least 1 year. Rather than go with an interim construction solution we are evaluating all feasible options to determine what is the best longterm solution to meet the needs of the community. We are optimistic that the solution will provide more modern and better wellness and aquatic services to our community. I want to reiterate that we closed the pool because it is beyond repair and to ensure our participants health and safety. To create the next chapter for services we will have to engage in significant fundraising to arrive at our goal just as Betty Wright had to do to realize her original dream. "
— Spokesperson Wendy Kuehnl
The Betty Wright Aquatic Center, an indoor warm water pool known for its services for people with disabilities, was permanently closed Friday to access how to best pay for needed repairs, according to a press release.
The pool, built in 1968, has been a community resource for more than 45 years.
"Due to age-related structural and engineering issues that can no longer be repaired, and after exploring all possible options to keep the pool open, we regret to announce that the pool must be permanently closed," the release states.
According to its draft June financial report, provided to Patch on Monday, the organization had $6.4 million in total revenue and about $6 million in expenditures.
Pool staff members will continue to offer aquatics rehabilitation services at existing partner sites; the Palo Alto Family YMCA and the San Jose State University Timpany Center.
Pool officials are pursuing partnerships with other local pools throughout the area to offer swim lessons and aquatic fitness classes.
In the meantime, a long-term planning group comprised of aquatics staff, participants, board members, and community leaders is exploring options to find a permanent solution to meet the aquatic needs of the community.
A meeting on the organization's future will be held 6-8 p.m. Oct. 23 at the pool, 3864 Middlefield Road.
The pool's services have included prenatal exercise classes, Adapted Aquatics for people with developmental disabilities, therapeutic rehabilitation for people recuperating from injuries and surgeries, exercise classes for individuals who prefer to work out in water, and open swim for individuals and families.
Abilities United (formerly C.A.R, Community Association for Rehabilitation) is a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization for children and adults with developmental disabilities and physical disabilities who live in Santa Clara or San Mateo counties.