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February 1, 2012

PLU Pool to Remain Closed Indefinitely

The PLU Pool was closed on Wednesday, Jan. 18, and will remain closed for an indefinite time period as analysis continues to assess damage and repair costs to the pool's damaged roof.

A cracked beam was discovered by swim team members during a Jan. 18 practice, forcing a building closure. The university was closed that day because of snow and ice, and there was already a substantial amount of snow and ice on the roof. Westmark Construction was hired to install shoring to prevent further damage to the roof, and by 9 o'clock that night the shoring was in place.

Since that time, structural engineers have assessed the damage and provided the university administration with ideas for repair.

In the meantime, the PLU swim team has been practicing at off-campus sites, including the University of Puget Sound and Curtis High School in University Place.

At this time, it is not clear whether swim classes will be held this spring or postponed. Extra expenses related to this damage are covered by PLU property insurance.

Additonally, the school's administration is using this closure time to assess other improvements to the pool. For instance, there is discussion about expanding the pool to eight lanes. The feasibility of other repairs and improvements is also under consideration.

Because of altered practice times and J-Term class schedules and exams, the Pacific Lutheran swim team did not travel to Spokane last weekend to compete in a Northwest Conference quad against Whitworth University, Whitman College and the University of Puget Sound.

PLU head coach Matt Sellman made the decision, he stated, "primarily due to how difficult getting pool time for training has been, what traveling over the two days would do to (the team) fatigue wise, and the onset of extra J-Term work piling up from not having class" because of a weather-related school closures. 

Pacific Lutheran's swim team will now focus its attention on the Northwest Conference Championships scheduled for Friday through Sunday, Feb. 10-12, at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way.

- PLU -