Construction is slated to begin soon for spring 2021 opening

IMLAY CITY — Looking ahead and hopefully past COVID-19 concerns, city commissioners on Tuesday, Sept. 1, agreed to move forward with plans to construct a splash pad adjacent to the Al Norlin Memorial Pool.

In a unanimous (7-0) vote, the commission awarded a construction bid for $353,018 to Penchura/Aquatix, with construction expected to begin in a matter of weeks.

Penchura was one of three contractors to submit bids by the July 17, 2020 deadline.

An artist’s rendering reveals some of the features to be included in the city’s new splash pad to be constructed adjacent to the Alvin Norlin Memorial Swimming Pool. Plans are for the splash pad to open to the public next Memorial Day, at the same time as the pool.


$150,000 grant

To help fund the project, Imlay City was awarded a $150,000 Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources (DNR) Recreational Passport Grant; leaving the city a balance of $203,018, to be paid out of the city’s Parks and Recreation Board fund.

The DNR grant award was the highest allowable amount per the terms of the city’s grant request to the DNR in 2019.

City Commissioner Kelly Villanueva, who serves as Park Board Chair, is pleased the city is moving forward with plans for the new water feature.

The size of the splash pad will approximate that of the swimming pool and feature water fountains, spill buckets and water jets; along with seating and a shaded area.

“I think the splash pad is something we need in our community for recreation purposes,” said Villanueva. “Especially for our kids and families.

“In the past, we always had the roller rink and movie theater as places for kids and families to go,” she said. “But those are gone now, and we need other things for people to do.”

Villanueva said plans are for construction to begin soon, with the expectation that the brunt of the work will be finished this fall.

“DPW Supt. Ed Pries is working directly with the contractor,” she said. “The plan is that our new splash pad will be ready for the public at the same time the swimming pool reopens next season.”

The city commission opted to not open the pool this year due to COVID-19 concerns.

Imlay Township installed their splash pad at their Fairgrounds Road park back in

Tom Wearing started at the Tri-City Times in 1989, covering the Village of Capac as a beat reporter. He later served stints as assistant editor and editor. Today, he covers Imlay City and Almont as a staff writer. He enjoys music and plays drums and sings with various musical groups in the Detroit Metropolitan area.