BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) — Former and current city leaders gathered Wednesday to officially start the project on O’Neil Park’s new pool.
Wednesday, Mayor Mboka Mwilambwe, the city manager, and current/former city council members dug the shovels into the ground where the new O’Neil pool will be.
In March council approved the $11.8 million project which will include a lazy river, diving boards, a water slide, and a bathhouse to the new pool area. The plan also includes upgrades to the park’s parking lot and a new skate park.
Mwilambwe said the project will bring new life to the city’s west side but will also benefit the entire community.
“It’s also a statement of value for the city because it lets people know on the west side that we do value them; we’re making a significant investment in this part of town,” Mwilambwe said.
Mwilambwe also announced an anonymous donor gave the city $20,000 to start an endowment to pay for O’Neil pool passes for families in need.
Interim Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Director Eric Veal said he hopes the pool and renovated park will attract more people to the area.
The former pool was 45 years old and was torn down earlier this year.