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Construction Of Splash Pad Underway

MARTINS FERRY — Martins Ferry’s swimming pool is receiving an upgrade with construction of a new splash pad set to open next week.

Mayor John Davies announced Monday that workers had begun constructing the new recreation area with completion expected Thursday. Residents will be able to enjoy the new feature early next week.

“I’d like to be able to have people use it before summer ends. It was a little pushed behind on schedule,” the mayor said.

Davies said he wanted to bring something new to the community for children to enjoy, though the splash pad is for everyone.

“We are senior and youth oriented because we need to take care of our seniors – they built this town. And the youth are the ones that are going to take our place, so we kind of stay in the senior-youth area,” he said, adding that city leaders work to do improvements for all residents with street paving on the forefront.

“We borrowed $1.2 million for street paving, so we’re going to start big paving projects. Instead of every two years, we’re going to pull sections. That went out for bid already and should be taking place in the near future. Our goal is Ninth Street, Crawford Heights, Hillendale, and Floral Valley to have all that paved this year.”

Davies said the plan for the pool addition has been in the works for the past four months. Martins Ferry City Council secured a $50,000 grant that aided in funding the project with the city contributing the remaining $50,000.

“We applied for $125,000 but we got a $50,000 grant. Council lent us improvement fund money to fund the other $50,000. It’s a $100,000 job,” he said.

“I appreciate council funding it. (Service Director) Andy Sutak worked hard on the grant (application) to get the grant money. .. I’ve got a good team of people.”

Davies said they are accepting donations from the community to assist with repaying the cost to the city. Anyone interested in donating can send checks to the city building — 35 S. Fifth St., Martins Ferry, OH 43950 — with a designation for “splash pad.”

The swimming pool remains open while work on the new pad continues. The area, stationed next to the pool, is roped off while work is being completed.

My Splash Pad out of Louisville, Ohio, is performing the installation. Lee Avilucea, an employee of the company, along with his crew were working on the plumbing for the new addition on Tuesday. He said the splash pad is 30 feet by 25 feet and will include a number of features and above ground apparatuses.There will be 12 ground nozzles that fluctuate. A sun spray will be stationed in the center of the pad with statue features to include a butterfly, ladybug, mushroom, fish head, turtle, bird and a flower shower. A stem will be situated at the corner where kids can hit the button to turn the splash pad on.

The company will return in 30 days to install the soft top surface — a rubber coating to help ensure the safety of those playing on the pad.

The city pool is scheduled to close Aug. 20; however, Davies said there have been some issues with water flow, meaning there may be a problem with the water pump.

“If that becomes an issue then they’ll probably shut the pool down sooner,” he said, adding that they are hoping to keep it open until the original closing date.

Even if the swimming pool closes early, Davies said the city will allow people to access the splash pad, potentially at no charge.

The Recreation Center holds free skate nights from 2-5 p.m. every Wednesday, up until the school year begins. Davies said he is working to put together weekend skate days and possibly themed dances in the future.

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