The Lumpkin County Board of Commissioners, Mike and Lynn Cottrell, the Lumpkin County Board of Education and the University of North Georgia (UNG) are all participating to help build the Cottrell Aquatic Center.
The design phase is intended to begin as soon as possible with construction early next spring and a goal of opening for use in late spring or early summer of 2022.
The Cottrell family has been a giving family, according to Tracy Sanford, programs and aquatic manager. Their contributions have also flooded into Hall County and Sanford thanked them for “stepping up to the plate.”
“Without them and their support, this project would not be near the scale that it has turned into,” Sanford said.
The Cottrell family has been contributing to the community for several years. Parks and Recreation manager Wade Chandler said for the family to share their success and want what is best for the community is what makes the community – and a project like the aquatic center – special.
The aquatic center will be located off of Pine Tree Way, in Dahlonega. In addition to the aquatic center, it will also be the location for the new Lumpkin County Elementary School.
The center will include a zero-entry pool, lazy river and splash activities for children, outdoor rental spaces, and a therapy pool. Chandler said that the center will also provide office spaces for people to rent, if needed.
The 50-meter pool will meet the requirements for both high school and collegiate swimming competitions. Additionally, swimming lessons and water safety classes will be offered for all ages. Another quality the aquatic center will serve is the Army’s Combat Water Survival Test for the UNG and the Corps of Cadets.
“We’re excited to have this opportunity to build a state-of-the-art facility in Lumpkin County that everybody can be proud of,” Sanford said. “This is not servicing just one area of our county; it is serving the entire population of our county.”
With Sanford being a Lumpkin County resident his entire life, he said the facility that will be built has the whole community eager to utilize.
“I don’t know that I’ve seen this kind of excitement ever,” Sanford said. “This will be the biggest building project the county has undertaken.”
Chandler said to the project would not have been possible without the support of the community.
will come to fruition and encompass the entire community has brought a lot of good energy.
Chandler said he is also looking forward to seeing the student athletes flourish, since the facility will be open year-round. Not only will the aquatic center be another tourist attraction to add the Dahlonega’s list, but Chandler said it will be of “resort quality.”
“We’re a tourist destination and we’re going to have something right here in town that’s going to be affordable,” Chandler said. “Folks that are coming into town can diversify their opportunities on their vacation recreating.”