The Pershing Field Indoor Pool retractable glass ceiling | Photo via Jersey City Mayor’s Office
JERSEY CITY – After more than 20 years of having an unusable roof, the Pershing Field indoor pool is fully operational with an impressive retractable glass ceiling unveiled by Jersey City officials led by Mayor Steven M. Fulop on May 4. The inauguration was a fulfillment of Mayor Fulop’s commitment he made in 2021 to fix the retractable roof.
The roof reconstruction, which cost $170,000, included the replacement of main cables, fasteners, pulleys, and motors, among other necessary repairs. A new mesh roof was also installed to keep out debris, such as falling leaves.
The retractable glass ceiling allows natural sunlight to shine year-round over the 25-meter, 6-lane pool. The roof is aesthetically pleasing, but the retractable feature also provides substantial ventilation for better air quality, which proved critical during the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, the improved airflow aids in the preservation of equipment by slowing down the rate of corrosion, a common issue caused by indoor pools.
“We’ve invested more in our parks and recreational facilities than any administration in decades. As a result, we’ve seen more and more residents rely on our public facilities to improve their physical and mental health, especially during the pandemic,” said Mayor Fulop. “The retractable roof is a unique feature that we hope will entice even more residents to utilize the pool and other public spaces within Pershing Field and around the city.”
According to the Mayor’s office, in addition to the retractable roof repairs, the Fulop administration has made several key investments to significantly improve Pershing Field facilities for the community to enjoy, including:
- 2016 – The administration built a brand new children’s playground with updated equipment and park furnishings, fencing, and lighting.
- 2017 – The Pershing Field Roller Skating Rink held its grand opening and continues to serve as a valued extension of Jersey City’s recreation programming.
- 2019 – The Pershing Field Pool reopened to residents and non-residents following extensive renovations for improved safety throughout the building’s locker rooms, offices, and public areas; replaced the filtration system; resurfaced the pool deck; and made necessary updates to bring the pool up to ADA standards.
- 2022 – Construction is underway to upgrade the Pershing Field Roller Skating and Ice Rink, including a new floor to improve safety and functionality for all skating participants.
“We’ve seen a significant increase in engagement in our Recreation and Youth Development programs recently, and we expect to see even more of our residents, from children to seniors, participating in our swimming programs as the retractable roof is a crowd-pleaser,” said Lucinda McLaughlin, Director of the Department of Recreation and Youth Development.
Mayor Fulop has also committed to restoring and preserving the 14-acre site of the historic Reservoir 3 adjacent to the pool as part of widespread park improvements utilizing Jersey City’s Open Space Trust Fund. The administration said it works closely with neighborhood residents and advocates to create safe public access to the neighborhood jewel.
“We have people coming to the pool seven days a week for swim lessons, exercise, recreation, youth swim teams, and the like,” said Rosemarie Nunez, Administrator of Aquatics and Facilities. “Everyone is excited as the weather warms, and we can open the roof up for a completely different swimming experience.”
The Pershing Field Indoor Pool is located within the 13-acre Pershing Field Memorial Park along Central Avenue in The Heights section of Jersey City. It is open to residents and non-residents seven days a week, all year round. For hours of operation and additional information about the pool, please visit the JC Rec Desk at jcrec.recdesk.com.
-With Ricky Rillera/PDM