Paso Robles school district puts pool up for auction


In an effort to downscale its pricey aquatic center project, the Paso Robles Joint Unified School District is auctioning off the parts of a pool it purchased. 

District officials listed the parts for the warmup-sized Myrtha pool on the website at a starting bid of $50,000. The pool cost $277,839 when it was new, according to a questions and answers section of the listing. 

The pool is designed to be 25 yards by 21.67 yards with a depth ranging from 3 feet 6 inches to 5 feet. The pool parts had been sitting in storage containers near Paso Robles High School for multiple years.

Partially funded by a $95 million bond measure approved by voters in 2016, the aquatic center project was initially estimated to cost $10.57 million. In Jan. 2019, amid district budget woes, officials announced a pair of contractors submitted bids between $11 million and $12.7 million, prompting school board members to decide to table the project. 

At the time, district officials said, if they were to sell pool parts, they would anticipate doing so at a 20 to 25 percent loss. 

The pool listed for sale is one of two pools the Paso Robles district purchased after embarking upon the aquatic center project. The district is keeping the parts for the other pool, the larger one, which they still plan to construct. 

Previous plans for the aquatic center

District officials purchased the larger pool for about $687,000. It was intended to be a 50-meter-by-25-yard competition pool with a maximum depth of 7 feet. However, the district has scaled down plans for the competition pool to a size of 38 meters by 25 yards. [Tribune]

Building the single, reduced-size pool will make constructing the aquatic complex more affordable, said Brad Pawlowski, the district’s assistant superintendent of business services. The district is now seeking an architect to design the complex around the smaller competition pool.

Even at a length of 38 meters, the pool would be the longest high school pool in SLO County.