The city will be hosting swim lessons, water aerobics, open swim and lifeguard training at the Arlington school district’s new natatorium when it opens in September 2020.
Arlington could even host national and intercollegiate swim competitions there.
Arlington approved a joint-use agreement with the Arlington Independent School District to use the facility for 2,500 hours per year. In exchange, Arlington will pay $1 million toward construction.
The natatorium will be part of the larger AISD Athletics Complex that will host basketball, wrestling, gymnastics and volleyball in addition to swim district competitions. The $40.7 million facility is under construction in the shadow of AT&T Stadium on Division Street just east of Collins Street. It was approved as part of the 2014 bond package.
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For the school district, it means students won’t have to swim at the University of Texas at Arlington or at Tarrant County College Southeast campus anymore. The 50-meter pool will have moveable bulkheads, a diving area, warmup pool and seating for 1,000 people.
“We are thrilled to be opening this state-of-the-art natatorium as part of our new athletics complex,” Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos said. “I’m excited about the opportunities available to our students and to the greater Arlington community through this agreement.”
For the city, the only indoor swimming pool is the Hugh Smith pool in east Arlington. With this interlocal agreement, Arlington’s Parks and Recreation department will be able to schedule programming when the school district isn’t using the facility.
Under the 10-year agreement approved by the City Council last month, Arlington will pay $100,000 a year for the first five years and nothing for the final five years of the agreement.
“The location of the natatorium increases the opportunity for north Arlington residents to participate in indoor aquatic programs,” said Venera Flores-Stafford, assistant director of parks and recreation.
“This agreement also provides opportunities for use of other district and city assets to accommodate marquee events that draw convention and tourism dollars to our city.”