By Jim Thomas (Originally posted on ocregister.com)
Longtime Long Beach-based diving coach Debby McCormick is confused and alarmed by what is, at the very least, a delay in implementing a plan to build a state-of-the-art aquatics facility to replace the condemned Belmont Plaza Olympic Pool.
Long Beach Councilman Gary DeLong, who spearheaded the planned project that was approved unanimously by the City Council on Feb. 12, 2013, is frustrated and worried the city will waste a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
All-time great U.S. diver Greg Louganis, who did some of his training in Long Beach during his glorious career, can’t really understand what the holdup is, either, saying construction of a facility that will bring national and international events to Long Beach is “a no-brainer.”
The source of their concern is the city’s apparent decision to rethink the project – or at least modify it – because of a dramatic increase in costs, from an estimated $60 million to $100 million and possibly more. For that reason, there will be a special study session at 4 p.m. Tuesday before a regularly scheduled City Council meeting.