City of Manhattan considering construction on new indoor aquatic center


MANHATTAN, Kan (KSNT) – After Kansas State University shut down the Ahearn Natatorium permanently due to maintenance costs, the city of Manhattan was left without an indoor pool that could be used for competitive swimming activities.

Now the city is considering constructing a facility of their own. But there are still decisions to be made, like when to begin the facility and where it will go.

“Past studies have pointed towards Cico Park,” said Jason Hilgers, Deputy City Manager. “It’s where an existing outdoor facility, outdoor pool, is located. But it is also a site where I think five different Manhattan High School varsity sports are played.”

The city commission on Tuesday unanimously approved a $15,000 “professional service agreement” with Manhattan-based Anderson Knight Architects to conduct a study to see whether a center is feasible and to draw conceptual models. That research likely won’t be completed until the end of 2021.

There is no timeline as to when a proposal will be presented to the Manhattan City Commission for approval.

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