Administrators should have spoken to constituencies, Pulliam Pool users

Dear Editor:

About two weeks ago, a copy of a resolution that had been sent to the SIU Board of Trustees for its March 2012 meeting appeared in the changing rooms at Pulliam Pool asking the BOT to approve a renovation to Pulliam Hall.   This included, as your readers are aware from your April 18 article, destroying the swimming pools. In presenting this resolution, it was noted that  “university officers were aware” of no considerations against its adoption, and that constituency involvement “was not pertinent to this matter.”

Whatever the arguments for and against the closure of the pool , I believe the administration should properly have spoken to the campus constituencies and to the many groups that currently use the pool. Many use Pulliam each year, which certainly belies vice chancellor Bame’s assertion that the “pool isn’t being used enough.”

Further, the recommendation dating back to 2009 of the consulting firm, Counsilman-Hunsaker, seems to have been made without any reference at all to the multiple uses to which Pulliam pool is being put.  I grant that the pool is elderly. Tara Kulash tells us in her article that the cost of complete renovation would now be about $500,000. Nonetheless this is but a fraction of the cost of the proposed remodeling which is estimated to be approximately $7 million, which would be paid for by student facilities maintenance fee.

Does the BOT have the complete picture?

Lawrence J. Dennis
Professor Emeritus

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