Last month, City Manager Deanna Santana wrote in a post on her biweekly blog that the shower facilities at the International Swim Center (ISC) are in critical condition, and are not open for public use. A preliminary review indicated that the shower facilities will need extensive repair or full reconstruction.
The City’s Parks and Recreation Department said the “men’s and women’s shower rooms experienced unexpected pipe leaks and water damage. City staff recognized wet areas on walls late last year and began further inspection. Once the issue was identified, the City quickly evaluated the extent of the issue and began working on short and long-term solutions. As a precautionary measure, the affected areas have been closed until repair and reconstruction can be completed.”
“Closure of the facilities allowed for inspection of the interior of the walls,” the Department said. “The challenge is the impact on swimmers, events and user groups. A temporary, six bay shower facility was placed into service and pedestal showers were reintroduced into the former shower bays during the peak of the competitive swim season and are still in use.”
The portable pedestal showers were installed and used for the Pro Swim Series, which was held June 7-10. The cost of the pedestal showers was about $28,000, and that of the temporary portable shower room rental was about $14,000.
James Teixeira, the City’s Director of Parks and Recreation, said that in addition to the portable shower trailer, “the pedestal showers provide a temporary solution while staff works with a consultant to develop options for extensive repair or full replacement of the closed portion of the facility.”
Teixeira said that there is not yet an estimate for how much the renovation will cost.
The Santa Clara Swim Club rents the facility, and its highest level athletes train at the ISC. Shannon Gomez, the Club Manager for the Swim Club, acknowledged the challenges that the closure of the shower facilities have brought upon.
“It has been a difficult and unfortunate situation for all people using the ISC,” said Gomez. “Although, we appreciate the City personnel putting in the portable and pedestal showers in the interim.”
One of the difficulties that Gomez pointed out was the lack of showers for the club’s athletes.
“There are less showers now, so it is not as convenient for our athletes to get a shower,” Gomez said.
The Department stated that there were fewer shower heads and no individual or private shower stalls at this time.
Gomez emphasized the need for “a full functioning locker room.” She added, “With over 500 swimmers coming in daily, the need for adequate locker room facilities is important and we are hoping for a solution in the near future.”
Teixeira said that a report on the matter is expected before the end of the summer, as the consultant develops long-term options. Also, additional pedestal showers will be installed during this month.
“A schedule will be developed once a course of action has been determined,” said Teixeira.