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SF's Balboa Park Public Pool Reopens After $11 Million Renovation

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) - City officials on Saturday unveiled the long-awaited transformation of the Balboa Park Pool following an $11 million, 2 1/2-year renovation.

The pool is part of Balboa Park, a 21-acre park just off Interstate Highway 280 near Ocean Avenue that also includes baseball diamonds, soccer fields, a children's play area and a skate park.

The improvements include a new community room for events, new mechanical and plumbing systems, a redesign to improve pedestrian safety and accessibility, a movable pool divider that allows for increased flexibility for swimming programs and a a 37-by-13-foot mural by artist Jason Jagel centered on figures symbolizing the San Francisco Merionettes, an award-winning synchronized swimming club formed in 1956 that still practices at Balboa Park Pool, and that preformed at Saturday's re-opening.

"Balboa Pool is the final piece of the major renovations we have led for this park over the last decade," said District 11 Supervisor Ahsha Safaí in a statement Saturday. "It will be the crown jewel of pools for generations of San Franciscans for years to come."

The renovation began in October 2016, and was supposed to have taken approximately a year. But several delays, including issues about new electrical service connections, affected the project.

The 2012 Clean and Safe Parks Bond provided more than $9 million in funding for the project, and a housing grant from the California Department of Housing and Community Development also helped pay for the work.

The Balboa Park Pool is one of nine public swimming pools in San Francisco.

The next pool slated for renovation is Garfield Pool in the Mission District, followed by Rossi Pool in the Inner Richmond.

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