Belmont Pool Closed, Pac 12's Forced to Move North

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 14

December 28th, 2011 College

The Belmont Plaza Pool in Long Beach, California has been closed for repairs through at least March, which will force the Pac 12 Championships to find a new host site at the last minute.

The facility was closed for two months in the fall while nearly 100 pipes (installed in the 60’s) were replaced to the tune of $300,000. At the time, the pool was leaking nearly 40,000 gallons of water per day. But these replacements cropped up a new problem on the pool’s main drain, and has forced the pool to close again to begin major repairs.

In the meantime, the meet will be moved to the East Los Angeles College facility, which was once a frequent host of the meet. The meet is still expected to be held from February 29th-March 3rd.

The East Los Angeles pool, while without the same national acclaim and history as the Belmont pool, is still seen as a fast facility. It is home to two indoor, 25-yard, 8-lane pools. The competition pool runs from 9-13 feet deep, with the seaparate warmup pool about 4-feet deep.

This shouldn’t throw off too many travel plans – the two pools are only about 25 miles apart (East Los Angeles College is a straight-short north from Belmont). This gives USC an even decidedly greater home-field advantage, though, as it is located only 10 miles from the new host site.

The women’s meet, along with men’s diving, will be held as planned at the King Aquatic Center in Seattle. Last week’s California/Nevada Winter Championships meet, held in mid-December, had to be moved to Golden West College (which, as an outdoor pool, was not an ideal option for Pac 12’s).

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Here’s a gallery with pics. Yikes!

I can’t believe that will be host of one of the premier conference meets in the country. I know some PAC-1? teams don’t put much emphasis on the meet, but there are some who do, and to ask guys to step up in that place is a slap in the face.


I remember swimming in that pool in 1979. Raced Steve Lundquist as he became the first swimmer to ever break 2:00 in the 200 breast… from lane 1. The pool is plenty fast, and if guys need a fancy facility to swim fast… then they’re not anyone to worry about. Just my opinion, but sometimes down and “dirty” means more than sterile and pretty.


classic pool– come on I am sure they will move the water polo cages away from comp pool like they have in the pictures. with some banners and some temporary lighting and that place will be fine- plus with spectator seating maybe there won’t be so many fights between some certain fans and everyone else like there is in belmont which is a tough place to watch a swim meet as it is.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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