A Tale of Two Pools SHC Doesn’t Use


Kate Zeller

Mirror Lake pool, located by New Hall and Rec Center

Kate Zeller, Staff Writer

 Spring Hill College has two pools on campus but are not in use due to renovations, lack of funding and storm damages.

 The Outlaw Recreation Center has an indoor pool located on the ground level that is no longer in use. There is another pool called Mirror Lake Pool and is located down the gravel path of Pope Francis Way, near New Hall Residence Hall.

According to Athletic Director Joe Niland, these pools used to be in use but due to certain circumstances they have not been revamped or funded.  

“The Mirror Lake Pool is controlled by the group City of Mobile Swim Association and they have leased it from the Mirror Lake Racquet Club,” said Niland. “The Outlaw Recreation Center pool was expected to be reopened or repurposed but lack of funds has prevented that to occur.”

Niland explained that in the past these pools were used.

“The pool in the Outlaw Recreation Center was in use from the opening of the recreation center in the fall of 1997 until it was closed in the 2008  to become the temporary site of the cafeteria or ‘poolteria’ as it was called,” said Niland.  “The Mirror Lake Pool has been part of the tennis club and it was for members only. There was a brief time a few years ago when it was open for limited use for students/faculty and staff.”

According to Niland, “a storm damaged the pool and it was closed until last year when the City of Mobile Swim Association leased the pool from the tennis club. CMSA paid to renovate the pool for their swim team to use.” 

Sophomore Kylie Doherty has been very proactive in the idea of getting the pool up and running for students. Earlier this year, Doherty began seeking answers on why the pools are not in use. She took initiative when she discovered the absence of space in the Outlaw Recreation Center.

Doherty said, “having a pool would benefit the students so much. It is a great way to get exercise, it would draw more students to school, and it can be a great way to socialize if we were able to have some sort of open swim.”

However, there is more than one challenge when it comes to getting the pools reopened.

According to Niland, from the time the pool opened in 1997 through 2008, there were always issues with finding and funding lifeguards. Without lifeguards, the pool sat empty often. Niland stated, “it was a very similar issue we currently have with staffing the rec center to be open for the posted hours.” 

Niland hoped a plan can be developed to repurpose the recreation center pool area to an auxiliary gym in the future. Niland said, “the gym would be more multi-purpose for recreational use. Currently, the area is not safe for use without renovation.”

For more information on the Arthur R. Outlaw Recreation Center or Mirror Lake Racquet & Swim Club, visit shcbadgers.com or mirrorlakeracquetclub.com