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Newark Swim Center Repairs Begin After Labor Day

The Silliman Aquatic Center will be closed until spring 2013 due to paint peeling from its ceiling.

People who swim at the should pack their goggles and floaties away or head to another pool for the next six months.

Starting Tuesday, the Newark-based swimming facility will be temporarily closed.

The center’s three swimming pools will be inaccessible while repairs are being made to its ceiling and Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system, according to city officials.

City leaders anticipate that the repairs will be completed within six months and plan to reopen by April 2013.

Officials say contractors will replace paint that is peeling from the center’s ceiling and that the pool area’s HVAC system will be redesigned in order to make it more efficient.

The cost of the project will be covered by a $3.2 million settlement reached between the City of Newark and the original contractors who built the Silliman  Activity and Family Aquatic Center, said City Manager John Becker.

The closure comes after the center’s summer profits saw the highest amount of revenue since its opening in 2004, according to City of Newark Recreational Director David Zehnder.

While numbers are still being finalized, Zehnder said its anticipated the Silliman Aquatic Center generated approximately $300,000 this summer season.

“It’s kind of neat that we’re finishing on a high note,” Zehnder said. “The warm weather has been great for us. It’s driven people to the pools.”

But $300,000 is also the total amount the City of Newark anticipates it will lose during the six-month closure.

The shut down will also impact more than 50 lifeguards and swim instructors and other employees, such as birthday attendants and café workers, whose working hours will be severely reduced, Zehnder said.

However, the aquatics center normally has a lower number of employees during the fall and winter, which is why city officials planned for the repairs to be completed during the off season, Zehnder added.

The City of Newark will still offer two swim programs through a partnership with Fremont-based Calphin Aquatic Club: Aqua Motion and Arthritis Foundation Aquatic Program. For more information about those programs, click here.

Still, swimmers will have options in the East Bay.

For indoor swimming, people can visit Hayward Plunge at 24176 Mission Blvd. in Hayward; outdoor swimmers can use the pool at the at 1325 East Calaveras Blvd. in Milpitas.

Because of the lack of swimming programs in Newark, the city’s recreation department will be offering more family-based programs, Zehnder said.

Those programs include, Family Bingo Night, Family Movie Night, Family Game Night and Holiday Drop and Shop events. for more information.

The center’s fitness area, gym, Teen Center and meeting rooms will continue to operate during the closure.

Regular hours for those areas are:

  • Monday through Thursday: 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Friday: 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
    Sunday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more information,  visit www.newark.org or call 510-578-4620.

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Mona Taplin August 30, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Many of us are going to miss the swim center for these many months!
Eve Pearlman August 30, 2012 at 04:54 PM
I'm glad they're doing the repair! It's always been a little creepy to be in the water and look up and see big sheets of paint hanging down...
Sunil Sethi September 03, 2012 at 04:09 PM
I hope they can refesh the air faster. I like the place, but you always feel like your in a room for of Chlorine.

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