April 2017 – LFSC Pool Renovation & Membership Update

 Now that spring is in the air we wanted to send out an update on our pool renovation! In mid-February, ahead of schedule, the concrete decks were poured and have been curing for the last few weeks. Work is happening in the pump rooms and pool tile installation began this week. Fortunately, the cold weather came late enough that it did not affect our construction schedule. As of right now we are still on target to open on Memorial Day!

For everyone’s sanity there are 2 parts to this email. If you want the bullet points then just read below. If you want all the nitty-gritty details then read to the end (Membership report is also at the end).

  • Pool is on schedule to open on Memorial Day weekend
  • Construction is on budget
  • In late January the Pool obtained the first phase of our $950,000 financing in the form of a $250,000 bridge loan. We will close on our $950,000 loan this week, pay off the bridge loan and our cash position is sound. We are financing the project through Sandy Spring Bank and anticipate no issues with closing.
  • The construction budget had included $200,000 for the deck, pergola, outdoor electrical work and a refresh on the bathhouse.
  • The refresh of the bathhouse includes repainting the exterior, replacing the roof, repairing/replacing any dry rot on the columns on the pool side, removing the exterior chicken wire and lattice and replacing with updated siding, creating a new concessions area with a serving counter by combining the current concessions closet with the swim team closet and refreshing the guard office with new shelves for better storage of pool equipment and materials along with a new counter that will allow guards the ability to safely access the front of the club without climbing over the counter.
  • During this process, we explored the possibility of fully renovating the bathrooms: adding some private showers to the men’s room and a new layout in the women’s room to avoid the bottle neck that occurs at the intersection of the showers, the cubbies and the changing area.
  • Not surprisingly, the estimates for a full bathroom renovations were higher than the original budget approved by the membership but even if the bathhouse estimates had come in on budget for all the work we wanted to do we were advised that there was a very likely chance of all that work not being completed by our opening date, thus meaning that the pool would have to stay closed until the bathrooms were completed in mid-June. Now that we have explored the scope and cost of this additional work in the bathrooms, we believe that the membership should consider doing this additional bathroom renovation work next year.

If you want the details of the bullet points above then keep reading….

The last 2 large remaining pieces of our renovation project are the landscaping and the bathhouse renovation. Landscaping bids came in on budget and our landscaper, American Plant, will time their work according to a timetable dictated by County inspectors but we anticipate that you will start seeing landscaping work in a few weeks. All of this work and all our landscaping plans are in compliance with our approved Forest Conservation Plan and M-NCPPC requirements.

Our construction budget had originally allocated $200,000 to cover the cost of the deck, pergola, outdoor electrical work and the bathhouse refresh project.

The bathhouse “refresh” will be completed before we open for the summer and includes the following work:

  • Exterior renovation – painting, new roof, removal of the current chicken wire and lattice and replacement with a different louver system.
  • Creation of a new concessions area by combining the current concessions closet with the swim team closet and relocating the swim team closet materials. This area will open onto the new patio and deck area.
  • Repairing and replacing any dry rot around the base of the house and the columns on the pool side.
  • Renovating the guard office to provide better storage of pool materials and equipment and install a new front counter that would allow guards to safely access the front of the pool house without having to climb over the counter.

As we began discussions on the bathhouse refresh with the architects, we learned that there was not much extra time or cost involved with asking the architects to draft up ideas for fully renovating the bathrooms while they were doing all of the other design work. We had reviewed membership comments/input from our planning meetings and there were numerous requests to consider re-working the current bathroom layouts. The men’s room currently has 1 communal shower and requests had been made to add some private showers. The women’s room has a continual bottleneck where the changing rooms, storage cubbies and pathway to the main shower all intersect in a dead-end. As we got further into the project we realized that when all is said and done, the membership may want the bathrooms to be upgraded to make the best use of the space. We also wanted to plan for a family changing room with a separate entrance to allow us to comply with any future Transgender Bathroom legislation that may be enacted.

While a full renovation of the bathrooms was not in our original scope of the project, we decided that the incremental cost of exploring this option was well worth it. While it would have been wonderful if all of this work had been possible with our approved budget, we knew it was unlikely and when the bathhouse bids came back it was clear that we would not be able to complete all the work on our wish list for what we had budgeted. Additionally, the contractors told us that the chances of finishing all that bathroom work before Memorial Day was close to impossible and we did not want to take this chance and risk not being able to open the pool on time if the interior bathroom work wasn’t complete.   The renovation work in the men’s and women’s rooms would require us to remove the concrete floor and re-work plumbing and electrical throughout the space and this is what was driving up the cost and would be the most time consuming.

We will not proceed with this work without a membership discussion and vote but the good news is that we have a full set of plans, a permit, initial bids, interested contractors and will be in a position to present these bids and the budget implications for a membership vote after our 2017 pool season.

Once we have time to catch our breath and determine where we came out at the end of the project we will see what funds we may have remaining and what we can do with the bathrooms. We will also garner input from the members as to whether they would like us to pursue this second phase of work. If approved, our hope would be to complete that work over the summer of 2018. As it stands now – at the start of this summer – the bathhouse will have a fresh, new look on the outside with the changes mentioned above which will allow it to flow with our new patio areas and the deck area with the built-in grill.

As always, please reach out to any Board member if you have any questions. We are happy to provide more details on any of the above or additional information on any of the plans.   We are so fortunate that our project has gone so smoothly and we are looking forward to celebrating by the pool with everyone in May. We will continue to send out regular updates until then.

Membership Update

The Membership Committee was able to offer a Full Membership to 26 Associates this year. 2 Associates from last year will again be offered Associate status for this summer. We will have 17 families moving off the wait list into Associate status. There are currently 234 families on the waitlist.

Many thanks,

Claire Slabaugh

LFSC President