UNF plans new olympic-sized NCAA regulation pool complex

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The University of North Florida will construct a new Olympic-sized, NCAA-regulation pool, complete with a diving well, likely to be located just north of the new Student Wellness Complex, Building 61, on campus.

The Andy Sears Pool in the UNF Aquatic Center was built in 1987 and needs costly repairs, the school said.

Like the current pool, the new complex will be shared by athletics and the recreation department, serving student-athletes and the campus. The current UNF Aquatic Center will close at the end of the 2013-14 women's swimming and diving season March 1. The Aquatic Center space will then be converted into recreational basketball courts.

The estimated cost to repair the current facility is $3 million. As a result, the university has decided to forgo repairs and build a new pool. During the time it takes to fund, design and construct a new pool complex, the UNF swim team will train and compete at Episcopal High School.

"UNF recognizes the inconvenience this will cause for student-athletes, the campus and the Jacksonville community, but it's the best long-term solution for replacing the 26-year-old facility," said UNF President John Delaney.

There are several other pool facilities for swim clubs and the community to use while UNF is constructing its new pool complex. There are more than 30 city of Jacksonville public pools open to the community, nine local YMCA facilities and the Beaches Aquatic Center.

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