What’s next for the Blackfoot pool facility?

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Blackfoot Pool | Natalia Hepworth, EastIdahoNews.com

BLACKFOOT — After the third bond failed for the Blackfoot city pool, the mayor has decided it’s time to move forward and repurpose the facility.

The pool closed its doors two months ago following the election Nov. 6. City Councilman Chris Jensen says the mayor wants to find out what locals want to put in the pools place.

“We could reopen it as a pool, which I know the mayor won’t entertain, or we have to turn it into something of equal recreational value,” Councilman Chris Jensen tells EastIdahoNews.com. “The status is called conversion status.”

Jensen says there may potentially be talks of a splash pad, a recreational court or a tennis court.

RELATED: Blackfoot Pool closes for good

Jensen says the pool can’t receive financial funding from the federal government now that it’s been shut down. It was originally built as a federally funded recreational facility. He says in order to maintain the building, it’s imperative that whatever replaces the facility be of the same recreational caliber.

“Since it’s closed, they basically said, ‘No more money for you,'” Jensen says.

He says the federal government will determine if the facility is of equal recreational value. He says the city can’t duplicate something they already own and it must be new. Jensen says the city already has a greenbelt, a racquetball court and a park.

Jensen says he’s been an advocate for the pool and feels he stands alone on the council in his thinking. He says it’s been a benefit to the city for 40 years and it would have been beneficial to make the repairs in order to keep the pool going.

“I’ve always said – I think we need a pool,” Jensen says. “I’ve always said that and that’s how I still feel.”

Locals can attend the meeting to express their opinion at the Nuart Theatre at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9.

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