DeSoto’s New Project Is Making A Big Splash

lap pool rendering

A new project is making a big splash in DeSoto.

The McCowan Aquatic & Recreation Center (MARC) is an approximately 75,000 square-feet, two-story facility that will serve the community in several capacities. These include recreational activities and competitive sports, including swimming.

“The City of DeSoto Department Parks and Recreation provides recreation programming opportunities to enhance the quality of life, specifically for DeSoto residents. This facility exemplifies the effectiveness of city wide long range strategic planning,” said DeSoto Parks and Recreation Director Chris Glover.

As part of executing the city’s master plan, DeSoto commissioned the construction of the aquatic and recreation center. Highlights of the project include:

*A full-scale indoor competition pool with eight lanes, equipped with observation decks on the second level, along with a leisure pool.

*Suspended above the first level is a roughly 400-foot fitness track for cardio workouts.

*The facility further boasts a fully equipped fitness area, as well as training studios for group activities.

*Nestled among soccer, baseball, and football fields, the McCowan Aquatic & Recreation Center offers city residents a fully functional gym and fitness experience.

The new facility is designed to offer health and fitness support to young families and provide a physical and social venue for active seniors through year-round senior activities.
Located in Curtistene S. McCowan Park, the facility is being realized as part of a larger master plan, which includes other public and sports-related amenities, including additional sports fields, an amphitheater, a sculpture garden, water features, and surrounding trails.

rendering of fitness space on turf
Rendering courtesy City of DeSoto

“Our need was based off of survey feedback from our residents during the master plan development and implementation phases,” Glover said, adding that the facility is projected to be available to residents and non-residents of DeSoto.

Glover said one of the city’s major objectives is to exceed the standard of excellence required to sustain the Certification of Accreditation of Parks and Recreation Agencies under NRPA (National Recreation and Park Association).

The benefits of accreditation include, but isn’t limited to:

*It demonstrates that the department meets national standards of best practice.

*Recognizes the community as a great place to live.

*Helps secure external financial support and reduce cost for the community.

*Holds the parks and recreation department accountable to the public and ensures responsiveness to meet their needs

*Ensures that all staff are providing quality customer service.

Bids for the facility are due by April 16. The project is slated to break ground in May and has a current construction schedule of 19 months.

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Rick Mauch
Rick Mauch is a veteran of more than four decades in the media. He began writing in high school and immediately went into broadcasting for almost a decade after graduating, working his way to morning drive in Birmingham, Alabama. However, realizing how much he missed writing (though he did continue to do some during his time in top-40 radio), Rick returned to what he loved and has been doing it ever since. Rick's career has spanned a plethora of media outlets, including community journalism, sports, entertainment, politics and more. He's worked in print, broadcast and online media. He also spent several years doing public relations for a children's home in East Texas - still writing on the side, of course. When he's not writing, Rick loves to play golf and do Bigfoot research. He's an avid believer. He also made his first hole-in-one in June of 2020. Rick is married to Junell Mauch. They have five children and three granddaughters

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