Pool under dance studio gone with renovations

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    Ballet dancers do not usually have a 90-year-old pool beneath their feet.

    The TCU Ballet and Modern Dance Building was built in 1921 as the university’s first gymnasium, but the dance department was relocated to the building in 1973. The pool was covered with a sprung dance floor never to be seen again, until now.

    Construction began on the dance building in December 2010. Workers uncovered the pool while removing the floors of Studio A.

    Physical Plant administrator David Hoyler said seeing the uncovered pool and the old archived photos of the pool was like watching the opening scene in the movie “Titanic.”

    “In the opening scenes you see [in the movie] the Titanic at the bottom of the ocean, then it fades into as it was in its prime,” Hoyler said. “It’s pretty fun to see that.”

    In years prior to the renovations, dancers were not concerned about the pool being under the floor.

    “We had no fears about falling through the floor cause they built the floor up so well,” ballet and modern dance double major Hannah Ernest said. “We didn’t really ever think twice about it.”

    Precautions were taken to ensure the safety of the construction workers while removing the floor. Hoyler said they put in temporary steel tube structures around the perimeter of the pool and across the middle for support.

    The demolition and removal of the pool was completed Feb. 22. With its expected completion in August 2011, the dance building will be renamed Lowe Hall.

    For photos of the construction and archival photos visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCdB9dVEruc