February 26, 2021
University announces decision to close pool facility
Kansas State University will permanently close the indoor swimming facility in the Natatorium because of ongoing ventilation and maintenance issues. The pool facility was closed in March 2020 due to pandemic-related ventilation issues.
Ongoing maintenance issues have created a $4 million backlog in needed repairs, which the university is unable to fund. The pool is classified as a recreation facility and is not eligible for Education Building Funds, which is the state funding source used to maintain campus buildings.
Given limited maintenance budgets and a priority of supporting academic programs, the Division of Facilities recommended to administration to close the facility. A cross-sectional group of university patrons, with representation from Recreational Services, UFM, the College of Health and Human Sciences, the Division of Facilities and others conferred last year and announced that the pool would be closed within three years due to the maintenance issues.
The university has engaged with a Manhattan community group that is exploring other possibilities for an indoor pool in the community. The group includes representatives from the city of Manhattan, Unified School District 383 and the Marlins swim club and other interested community leaders.