Digging for water

Ground broken for new Killdeer Aquatics and Wellness Center

July 24th, 2015

Anita Mjolhus said when it came time for Killdeer to replace its city pool, the consensus was "Let's start over."

The city commissioner said the former pool was a community favorite of 25 years, but time eventually rendered it worse for wear.

"As with anything, all those years of use in the summer, our pool got tired," she said. "... It needed a lot of repairs."

With the future in mind, the city began the process of building its replacement Thursday—the $6 million Killdeer Aquatic and Wellness Center.

The 14,500-square-foot, year-round facility will replace the outdoor pool at the corner of Dakota Street and Central Avenue, which is near the Killdeer Public School and its new outdoor stadium.

Mjolhus said the city decided to move forward with a wellness center because fitness is a "going thing" in the community, which has seen growth because of the western North Dakota oil industry. She emphasized its year-round availability as a bonus over the old pool.

The center will have a multi-depth indoor pool, along with a party room and another filled with light exercise equipment. It'll also have locker rooms, including one designed for families, she said.

"I'm very excited to see this," she said.

The new facility's construction will be supported through voter-approved 1 percent sales tax, as well as from loans and bonds. It expected to be complete by July 2016.

The facility was designed by JLG Architects. JE Dunn is the project's construction manager.

Todd Schilling, vice president of JE Dunn and the overseer of its operations in North Dakota, spoke before a small crowd Thursday during the facility's groundbreaking ceremonies.

"We like to celebrate milestones on our projects," he said. "This is the first of many that will occur and everybody will be involved in future milestones as well."

Rob Remark, JLG's marketing leader for the region, said his firm has had a "really smooth design process" so far and has experienced a sizeable amount of community support.

Remark said he and his team get excited when they're able to design facilities that benefit small communities.

"We're creating an environment that is just going to increase health," Remark said.

Source: Dickinson Press