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Josh Brush and Raul Murray

Raul Murray, right, and son Josh Brush race down slides Tuesday at the Campbell Park pool in Baraboo.

Looking to dip a toe into the water rather than dive in, the Baraboo Parks Commission will seek a consultant’s help in determining whether to repair or replace the city’s 80-year-old outdoor pool.

On Monday, commissioners asked Parks Director Mike Hardy to get cost estimates on a study of the aging facility at Campbell Park. Hardy said a basic study could cost less than $10,000.

Commissioners are looking for advice on whether they should repair the pool or rebuild it. The city pays $20,000 to $30,000 each year to repair plumbing pipes and pumps. Hardy said complaints about the condition of the pool and its locker rooms are increasing.

“We need to think long-term about the pool,” Hardy said, noting that the city already faces a full slate of big-ticket construction projects several years out. “If we want to do it in the next few years, we’ve got to plug it in that system somewhere.”

“We need to do something with the pool,” said Commission President Roy Franzen. “The whole thing should be replaced.”

Having to wait a year or two to begin site work would bring one benefit: Giving parks leaders time to line up city funding and private donations. “That would give us some time to get community support behind it,” Hardy said.

He noted Richland Center is spending more than $4 million to renovate its municipal outdoor pool this year, complete with water slides and a lazy river.

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Baraboo News Republic Senior Reporter