Como Pool Closed for Good

A popular summer destination for Saint Paul residents has closed and the end of an era has come to the Como Park neighborhood.  The deteriorating Como Pool, which has been serving the community since 1962, has closed for good due to safety problems and high repair costs.  The decision as to when another pool will be built to fill its absence has not yet been made.

The Como Pool has needed repairs for many years.  Because of mechanical and electrical problems, the City of Saint Paul has decided the pool can't be operated safely.  The infrastructure is now so old that repairs would far outrun its value.  Bringing it fully up to operational code would cost well over $1 million.

Como Pool was built for $161,000 by the private firm Public Pools Inc., which operated it on land leased from the City of St. Paul until 1965 when the firm went out of business. The city then bought the pool for $15,000. 

The outdoor pool attracted 15,000 swimmers each summer until its closure this past September.  Most visitors live in homes the neighborhoods that surround Como Regional Park in St. Paul: Como Park, North End, Thomas-Dale, and Midway.  Those residents are very interested in what will come of the pool closure.  They want to share their concerns on matters ranging from how a new pool should be constructed to solving traffic and parking problems. 

The city intends that a new pool be a neighborhood attraction rather than a regional one.   Additionally, neighborhood parking concerns are a high priority.  Traffic in recent summers has overwhelmed neighborhood streets, both from swimmers walking to the pool and visitors to the park, zoo and conservatory. Neighbors want to work with the city to find a solution.  At the same time, all parties involved want to be sure that Como Park isn't overdeveloped.  Green space in the park area surrounding the pool will remain intact.

The Como Park Alliance is collecting public comment on the pool issue in an online survey. For more information, see their website!

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