After nearly two months of renovation, Stuyvesant’s swimming pool is back open and good as new. Principal Stanley Teitel closed the pool on Thursday, September 25, after learning that a 40-pound hanging acoustic tile had become partially detached from the ceiling. As a result of the closure, swimming physical education classes were displaced, and the girls’ varsity swim team had to seek out other locations for practices and meets. Until mid-November, the maze of scaffolding that was the pool resembled a giant jungle gym more than an aquatic center.
Construction on the pool was completed on Monday, November 17. It was funded by the New York City Department of Education and thus, had no impact on Stuyvesant’s budget. According to Assistant Principal Health and Physical Education Martha Singer, however, it was out of use for about a week afterwards because the water was too cold. “Most kids didn’t go back in until after Thanksgiving,” she said. The re-opening was just in time for the boys’ varsity swim season. “It’s good to have our pool back, since it’s one of the best in the city,” senior and boys’ swim captain Albert Chang said.
The administration originally expected the construction to be completed in early December. At first, Singer was concerned that it would be completed much later than that because she saw little progress early on. “When you don’t see people working, you don’t expect it to be done on time,” she said. Nevertheless, the construction workers proved to be efficient and got the job done ahead of time. “They just followed their timetable and there weren’t so many delays,” Singer said.
The reason for the tile’s collapse, according to Singer, was simple. “Age causes things to break down,” she said. To address this, the construction not only fixed the most problematic tile, but also restored other aging parts of the pool to prevent other potential incidents. “It won’t happen again in the near future,” Singer said.