February 2024 Update

Dear Meadowlane Pool Families,

Thank you for your patience and your support throughout the past year. It has been a challenging year to be certain.  Yet throughout, we have remained united in the goal to reopen our beloved Meadowlane Pool.  Currently, we are writing to share an update on the status of our efforts and the process with which we are moving forward.  Through transparency, we hope to avoid misunderstanding and stay collaborative in our efforts.

Process Update

Last March, the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy, along with the Lancaster County Health Department, completed an inspection of Meadowlane. It was determined that “the swimming pool will need to have an engineering evaluation and fix any deficiencies prior to opening.” A list of specific concerns was enumerated within the inspection report, ranging from loose pool coping and tiles, large cracks and uneven surfaces within the pool decking, and chipping in the pool basin.  Additionally, there were concerns with the diving board and slides.  The pool filters were inoperable and need replacement.  Further, subsoil conditions under the pool decking were unknown and required investigation for erosion or settling. 

The volunteer members of the Meadow Lane Park Association spent last summer and fall discerning whether reopening the pool was even possible and, if so, what steps were needed to accomplish it.  Additional board members were recruited, and a path forward was envisioned.  To be clear, no one is at fault for the pool being closed.  Six decades of wear and tear on the pool necessitates updates to be made, paving the way for another three generations of summertime memories.

Last fall, the Meadow Lane Park Association put forth a plan to transition from a 501(c)7 membership organization to a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  One factor which has led to deferred maintenance over the years is a lack of necessary funding.  The ability to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions will be a significant step forward in this regard.  Legal counsel was secured, and the necessary non-profit applications were submitted to the IRS in December 2023.  This process can take 9 to 12 months for approval.  However, if the pool is going to be reopened, fundraising efforts need to begin sooner.

To expedite the fundraising efforts, a partnership with CHAD (Combined Health Agencies Drive) has been established.  CHAD facilitates employee giving campaigns specifically designated for health organizations and partner agencies that support healthy families and strong communities.  Corporate partners, charitable foundations and individual donors can now make tax deductible contributions, designated for the Meadow Lane Park Association, through CHAD.  Read more about this partnership at www.chadnebraska.org/fiscal-sponsorship.

Construction Estimate

The NDEE and Lancaster County Health Department specifically require an engineering evaluation of the pool and the repair of any deficiencies.  Toward that end, Jason Suelter at Vector Structure Design and Murtaza Nolwala at REGA Engineering Group, Inc. are leading the effort to structurally review all aspects of the pool, pool decking and subsoil conditions.  Both engineering firms are well respected within the community and will represent Meadow Lane Park Associate’s interest when selecting contractors. Furthermore, it will be their post-construction inspection which ensures that all safety concerns have been resolved and the pool is safe to operate.   Multiple swimming pool specific contractors and maintenance firms have also been included in the process to define the proper scope of necessary repairs.

A detailed inspection of the pool’s structural integrity has been completed by Vector and REGA.  Most recently, portions of the pool decking have been removed to inspect subsoil erosion problems.  A lack of proper drainage away from the pool is a potential concern and will be addressed in the engineering plans.  In March, the surrounding property will be surveyed.  A set of construction documents should be completed by April or May.  These documents will allow us to confirm that our approach to repairs will satisfy the NDEE and Lancaster County Health Department concerns and that contractor’s estimates are within the necessary scope. 

The board of directors has been receiving preliminary recommendations from pool contractors on how the issues should be resolved.  As you can imagine, those estimates range significantly in scope, proposed process, and costs.  This has been informative but does not provide a definitive plan for the best course of action.  By June, all interested parties can provide construction estimates based on the Vector and REGA’s scope of work and construction documents.  Estimates will be reviewed by the Meadow Lane Park Association board of directors, as well  Vector and REGA.  Contractors should be selected in July, with work completed in late summer to fall.

Unfortunately, this necessary timeline precludes any possibility of Meadowland Pool opening in 2024. The process, while slow, is being done with a long-term vision of correcting structural and safety concerns of the pool in best manner possible.  If the engineering and construction process runs smoothly, and we can afford to make the necessary corrections, we envision the pool reopening for the 2025 season.  Like you, we are excited to return to spending summer evenings at the pool with our families and friends!

Fundraising Efforts

Completing the needed repairs to the pool, the decking, and equipment will be no small task.  Paying for the project will also require a significant effort.  Fundraising and marketing plans are being developed by Jude and Stephanie Werner, who work in these areas and have assisted in other capital projects.  The ‘Big Splash’ campaign is currently being developed.  Preliminary conversations are taking place with potential community partners who see the value of  the Meadowlane Pool for families and the neighborhood.  The success of this project is dependent upon leadership community support, as well as a broad base of small businesses, community foundations and generous individuals.  There will be a role for everyone to help.

Those interested in making a personal charitable contribution to the pool can do so now through CHAD.  Your early support will help with the costs of engineering and site testing.   A more visible community fundraising campaign can begin in earnest once the project scope and cost are solidified later this spring.  Participation in the Lincoln Community Foundation’s Give to Lincoln Day, held on May 30, 2024 is an important goal.  Watch for updates on the fundraising efforts and how you can help both in volunteering and generosity.  Everyone’s efforts will be needed for us to open the pool in 2025!

In summary, the Meadowlane Pool has been a staple in our community and in our families for over sixty years.  We’ve watched toddlers learn to swim and those on the Meadowland Makos find confidence.  We meet our neighbors for summer evening conversations, and we enthusiastically celebrate the Fourth of July!  From parent and grandparent volunteers, high school lifeguards and even local Boy Scouts painting the pool house, Meadowlane is part of who we are.  The memories and friendships that are fostered here are invaluable and worth preserving. 

In the months ahead, the support and patience of each of you will be appreciated.  Your volunteerism and generosity will be essential.  Together we can restore Meadowland Pool and once again enjoy the laughter and smiles that come from each and every ‘Big Splash.’


Meadow Lane Park Association Board of Directors      

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