News From Terre Haute, Indiana

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July 12, 2013

READERS' FORUM: July 12, 2013

Swim center has multiple benefits for Vigo County

I have been a swimmer most of my life and one of the best exercises for the entire body is lap swimming. It is easy on the joints and great for the cardiovascular system.

Building a new aquatic center is right for this community for a number of reasons. For student athletes, swimming is the sport with the least amount of serious injuries, i.e. concussions, and swimmers on average have some of the highest GPAs at South High School.

For the community, a new aquatics center would be a drawing point for professionals looking to possibly relocate to Terre Haute for both themselves and their children.

I have struggled with not always having a pool to swim in on a regular basis in Terre Haute. I was frustrated when the Y closed and I had no easy access to other pools in town. I couldn’t use the pool at Rose or ISU unless I was an alumni, staff, student or employee of either school.

My son has swam for the Terre Haute Torpedoes since he has been in second grade. What a difference THT has made for him. He has matured emotionally and physically because of swimming. The consistency, discipline and relationships he has developed due to the swim program will stay with him the rest of his life.

Building an aquatics center would also bring jobs to Terre Haute including construction employment and staff employment. When the question comes up regarding how will the students get to the facility, all one needs to do is look at the drop off/pick up of students by adults on any given day at schools in the area to see there are plenty who are willing to get their student where they need to be.

A centrally located facility would be approximately seven-10 minutes from any of the high schools. Yes, it will cost, but we need to, as a community, have vision and forward thinking, not reaction and hind sight.

The pools at both North and South are dying. They will soon be unfixable. So the question is not if these pools will be filled in permanently but when and we need to have something in place before that happens.

If you are curious about what this aquatics center may look like, Google Crawfordsville aquatic center and have a look. It is a jewel in their community. If a small community such as Crawfordsville can do it, there is no reason why Terre Haute cannot do it.

— Teri Mandeville

Terre Haute

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