Work resumes on pool project

Work continues on the Thompson Park pool project Friday in Watertown. Sydney Schaefer/Watertown Daily Times

WATERTOWN — Before the north country’s reopening on Friday, work had resumed on the Thompson Park pool.

City Manager Kenneth A. Mix said Friday that construction had started back up already, before Phase I of the region’s reopening.

Mr. Mix said the pool and bathhouse project resumed “a while ago” but he didn’t know when construction on the controversial $3.3 million pool project started up again.

On April 1, construction stopped as part of the coronavirus pandemic after it initially it was given a go-ahead.

Michael A. Lumbis was recently included in an email about the project.

“It’s getting closer to the finish line,” he said.

If the project is completed soon, the pool won’t be able to open anyway. The state has prohibited the use of public pools because of the pandemic.

The general contractor is Con-Tech Building Systems, Gouverneur.

The pool became a major campaign issue during last fall’s mayoral and city council elections.

Before the project began, there was a contentious and lengthy debate on how to pay for the pool. In what was a controversial move, a divided council decided last summer to pay for the pool with $2.9 million of the city’s fund balance. In January, Mayor Jeffrey M. Smith and the new council reduced that amount to $1.5 million.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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