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VALLEY FOCUS | Calabasas

Swim Center Plans to Add Pool for Kids

March 31, 1998|SYLVIA L. OLIANDE

To provide a better learning environment for its youngest swim students, the operator of the Calabasas Tennis and Swim Center has proposed building a second, smaller pool at the facility.

Dolphin Swim School has received tentative approval from the Calabasas City Council to construct a teaching/therapeutic pool, and is expected to get final approval at a council meeting Wednesday.

Greg Johnson, the city's community services director, said the council withheld final approval until the site's parking plan was reviewed, a new contract was drafted and the surrounding community was consulted.

Greg Friedman, owner of Dolphin Swim School, said the pool would allow him to expand the Learn to Swim and Mommy-and-Me programs for beginners, some as young as 8 months old.

The depth of the 18-by-30-foot pool would go from 2 feet to 5 feet, as opposed to 12 feet in the larger pool.

Also, the water would be heated to 88 or 89 degrees, warmer than the larger pool, which is normally around 83 degrees.

The idea is to have a pool that is not as as intimidating to youngsters as the regular pool, Friedman said.

"For the young children, the regular pool looks like the ocean as far as they're concerned," he said.

The pool is expected to cost Dolphin $20,000 to $35,000.

To offset the cost, the city may alter its contract with the school to give it a larger share of the profits.

The school now has a two-year contract, with Dolphin taking 70% of the profits and the city 30%. A new, five-year contract would increase the school's share to 75%.

Johnson said the new pool would be a good addition to the facility but is one the city would not have contemplated on its own because of the costs.

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