Council to meet on pool, other projects


The Liberty Hill City Council will meet July 27 to consider a lengthy list of issues including the future of the planned swim center.

The Council will meet with the Parks Board – which guided the project from inception to a groundbreaking last summer – to discuss options for the project that now faces questions over projected increased costs and funding sources.

On the table are two options, the previously approved project and an alternate brought to the Council in early July by Mayor Rick Hall.

The previously approved project was voted on by the Council in the Spring of 2019, had a price tag of $1.35 million at the time after factoring in a $500,000 grant from Texas Parks and Wildlife. Hall said that project now has a price tag of $2.19 million, an estimate also provided by Halff Associates which designed the project. No explanation was given on how the estimate increased more than $800,000 or whether the new estimate is before the grant funds are factored in or after.

The second plan includes a smaller building, no zero entry, and replacing the splash pad with a kiddie pool.The new plan is proposed at just over $1.5 million based on projections from Halff Associates.

When the Liberty Hill Master Parks Plan was developed, more than 60 percent of respondents to a community survey wanted to see a splash pad or water feature, and just under 60 percent said they wanted a city swim center – by far the two most popular wishes from the community in the survey.

In March 2019, the city council approved plans for designers with Halff Associates to move forward with detailed plans and bid documents to seek construction bids for the project.

The swim center as approved includes a roughly 1,300 square foot open-air pool house facility with restrooms, pavilion area, vending and changing rooms. There would be no heating or air conditioning.

As plans were drawn up, the option was included to have restrooms and a potential vending area accessible year round for park users, even when the pool was closed.

The pool itself would be about 4,800 square feet, with a zero entry grade on one end and reaching a depth of five feet on the other. This allows children to play in the shallower end more easily, and creates greater ease of entrance for everyone.

Plans also include fencing, shade structures, landscaping and grass areas surrounding the pool deck.

A parking lot with approximately 60 spaces, along with an improved entrance on County Road 200 and the decomposed granite half-mile trail around the southern half of the park are also included.

The evening will include a workshop at 5 p.m to review and discuss potential updates to the City’s Unified Development Code. The regular meeting will follow at 6:30 p.m., and both will be held in the council chambers at 2801 Ranch Road 1869.

The Council will also:

• Receive an engineering update on the plans to realign the intersection of CR 279 and Loop 332 downtown for discussion and possible action.

• Hear an overview of current capital projects.

• Discuss and consider design for the planned community center.

• Discuss a new master drainage plan for the City.