The much-anticipated, much-touted splash pad at Holland Park, a $5.1 million addition that opened just weeks ago, is having a difficult time staying open without recurring problems of one sort of another.
Filtering issues had hampered the initial (soft) opening of the pad. In mid-June, what appeared to be electrical issues later traced to a software problem developed, forcing the pad to close for a few days. There’s been other issues. The pad closed again today as cracks were detected in the soft padding.
“The contractors were onsite last week regarding an outstanding warranty issue that has since intensified, requiring the immediate inspection,” a city statement issued on Wednesday stated. “The rubber pad surface of the splash pad is cracking and deteriorating in some areas which could become a tripping hazard. The City’s priority is to ensure the safety of everyone at the splash pad.”
Today, the city announced “with regret” that it was closing portions of the splash pad “until further notice,” citing safety concerns. It had officially opened on May 14, with council members, county commissioners and a school board member present.
The pad has become a tripping hazard in portions. “Additionally, the loose material from the rubber pad surface is entering the filters and strainer baskets which can cause the filter to fail, resulting in further maintenance or the need to replace the entire pump,” today’s statement read.
“In an effort to keep as many features open as possible, a portion of the splash pad will remain open during operating hours. The areas that will be closed include: the whale and whale tail, the mantra ray, the rings, and the two turtles in the toddler area. The water spray features will be turned off in those areas and the areas will be blocked off using construction fencing. Additional areas may need to be blocked off if additional deterioration occurs.” The area closed off appears to represent about half the surface of the splash pad.
The splash pad is under warranty, so the city is working with the contractor “get the issues resolved as soon as practical. The City recognizes the inconvenience this causes to families, especially during the summertime, and will work expeditiously to get these problems resolved, however, the City’s priority is to ensure safety and prevent injury to everyone at the splash pad.”
Open portion of the splash pad should be operational by noon on Friday, though the tentativeness of the city’s statement’s wording suggests that times and dates are becoming as fluid as the pad’s ability to operate. The playground portion of Holland Park, which re-opened in June 2017 after protracted, $4.7 million renovations, will remain open. Those portions have not experienced many issues, other than a brief fix required at the dog park, and the park has continued to be the city’s biggest outdoor draw.
To check the hours of operation for the splash pad, go here.