Officials at the city’s Department of Health finally released the list of the pools its inspectors shut down this year. As a followup to our summer pool coverage, here’s the lowdown:
The indoor pool at the University of the District of Columbia was closed Mar. 4 “for leaks,” according to DOH spokesperson Dena Iverson. Apparently, water has been seeping out of the pool and into the ground for years prior to the shutdown, says UDC spokesperson Alan Etter, who says school officials have hired a contractor and hope to reopen the pool next spring.
“For years, they’d patch it,” he says. Now, “they just want to fix it right.”
The other four pools closed this year were inside apartment complexes, and the managers are none too eager to talk about their public shaming.
Eliot Bernold, manager at Brookland Manor, blames bureaucratic red tape for the June 25 closing at his complex on 14th Street NE near Rhode Island Avenue.
“It was one day when there was a bureaucratic issue that was resolved within a few days,” says Bernold, before adding testily, “I have no more comment.”
Bernold was downright cordial, however, compared to the response from the Capitol Park Plaza apartments in Southwest, where manger Pat Rooks hung up the phone after insisting her pool was the victim of false allegations.
“There was nothing wrong with the pool. Someone made an accusation so the pool was closed for the day. But they reopened it,” Rooks says.
We’re still waiting to hear back from Iverson to confirm Rooks’ and Bernold’s characterizations of those two closings. About 48 hours after we first starting pestering DOH to check its records, Iverson said the department was still “investigating.” She did not respond to follow up question inquiring as to what there was to investigate since the closures took place some time ago.
Meanwhile, managers at two ritzier complexes—-Vaughan Place at McLean Gardens and Market Square West—-did not return phone calls.
Vaughan Place, which has a Web site prominently displaying a photo of a guy diving into clear blue pool water, was closed on July 21, according to the health department. Officials shut down the pool at Market Square West, near the Mall, back in June and still haven’t signed off on its reopening, according to Iverson.