Tourtellotte Pool expected to reopen by July 1

Tourtellotte Pool expected to reopen by July 1
Tourtellotte Pool in Mankato is expected to open by July 1.

MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - Tourtellotte Pool in Mankato is expected to open by July 1st with restrictions.

The city of Mankato says in partnership with the Mankato YMCA, the re-opening will focus on structured swim activities. The general public can make a reservation for lap swims and water walks; swimming lessons can be held.

Any further re-opening will be evaluated on how well social distancing practices are being handled and the following guidelines below.

. Prior to opening, a number of Minnesota Department of Health Requirements must be met, including having a COVID-19 preparedness plan that addresses the following:

--Operation at a capacity of 50 percent. Implement social distancing of six feet between each person (except family groups) on the pool and deck. Since square footage of the facility must be considered, it’s likely the pool will have less than 50 percent capacity, which is 405 people in the facility at a given time.

--Ensure adequate staffing to help manage social distancing and assist with regular cleaning and sanitation as well as in between each scheduled session.

--Signage informing of requirements, handwashing reminders, location of handwashing and sanitizing stations, as well as how to identify COVID-19 symptoms.

--Protocols and other safety considerations determined so it’s known what to do if there’s an emergency. Use of cloth facing coverings when not in the pool.

--Establish a protocol for cleaning and disinfection, such as before opening, during pool operations, between shifts and after closing.

--Implement employee and customer screening.

To align with the executive order and Minnesota Department of Health requirements while ensuring the safety of lifeguards and staff, it’s recommended to initially reopen the pool with a focus on structured activities. In partnership with the Mankato YMCA, a pool operations plan has been developed that focuses on structured swim activities.

The general public can make a reservation for lap swims and water walks; swimming lessons can be held; and the Mantas and Rays swim clubs will use the pool at scheduled times. While not a full reopening, there are benefits to the community. Local swim teams comprised of more than 100 youth can participate in a summer sport while exercising daily; the general public has access to safe aquatic exercise and skill development; and, the scheduled activities will help staff better ensure health and safety. Open swim sessions are still being considered and may be added later as the state of Minnesota provides further guidance as part of the Stay Safe Plan. Future swim activities depend on how well social distancing can be achieved, capacity requirements, staffing availability and time and cost required for extra cleaning and sanitation of the facility and any equipment used.

City staff will continue to work with the YMCA to review options while following local and state guidelines and requirements. Learn more about the reopening of public swimming pool and aquatic facilities. https://tinyurl.com/y83uhxhl

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