Hunting Park pool remains closed as city heads into heat wave

"It would be fun to actually have it open again. This heat is really too much," said Alondra Pacheco of Hunting Park.

BySharifa Jackson via WPVI logo
Wednesday, July 20, 2022
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"It's bad because the neighborhood really needs it. The neighborhood thrives off the energy it provides," said Coach Hashaan Freeman of the closed pool at the Hunting Park Recreation Center.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- For the third year in a row, repair delays will keep the pool at the Hunting Park Recreation Center closed.

On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation confirmed to Action News the pool was deemed "structurally unsound."

"It would be fun to actually have it open again. This heat is really too much," said Alondra Pacheco of Hunting Park.

As the city of Philadelphia enters a new and oppressive heat wave, families in Hunting Park are frustrated with the fact they have one less place to cool off.

"When the kids get done playing, they're like, 'Hey, can we go in the pool?' I have to see their sad faces like, 'sorry, the pool's not open,'" said Joell Wood of Hunting Park. "I don't have any answers and I wish I did. A lot of kids want to be here."

A spokesperson for the department says making the repairs to open the Hunting Park Recreation Center pool "is a priority project for Parks & Rec, and has been for a number of months."

This year the city says out of 63 outdoor pools, 50 are set to open.

Pools began to open on a rolling basis beginning late last month.

A lifeguard shortage continues to be an issue across the country.

Philadelphia Parks and Recreation selects which pools to open based on available staffing, geography, past pool usage and neighborhood need.

"It's bad because the neighborhood really needs it. The neighborhood thrives off the energy it provides," said Coach Hashaan Freeman.

Freeman leads a team of students who practice tennis at the park. He says the pool is a big part of their program.

"Honestly it just seems pretty pathetic that it's not open. I hope the city jumps on it and gets it done. I know we sure appreciate it. We have our fingers crossed," said Freeman.

A spokesperson for Parks and Recreation says repairs are underway to address the structural issues of the pool. Once the work is complete, the pool will immediately open. A target date is set for mid-August.

Click here to find an open Philadelphia pool near you.