Liquid Lifestyles, a Bay Village company that provides swimming lessons throughout Greater Cleveland, has taken the first step in gaining — for the second time — city approval to build on Viking Parkway, just west of Bradley Road.
City Council initially approved the plans of Liquid Lifestyles in June 2019. As of last year, the building was to have room for three indoor, in-ground pools: a three-lane lap pool, a 30-by-40-foot shallow pool and a slightly smaller pool with a ramp.
Liquid Lifestyles will have roughly $650,000 in annual payroll. Co-owner Mike Cousino said the building has gone through a couple of design changes but estimated it would consist of 6,000 square feet.
Company officials told council’s Planning, Zoning and Legislative Committee Sept. 9 that progress on gaining financial backing for the $1.5 million project was delayed due to the pandemic. In the meantime, the conditional-use permit the planning commission and City Council approved last year expired. Council’s planning committee approved a new conditional-use permit at its recent meeting.
The project next goes to the planning commission. If it gains approval there, the full City Council will get it for a vote. No timeline was given regarding the needed approvals. Ward 6 Councilman Mark Getsay, who chairs council’s planning committee, said he wished there was a way to speed the process.
Even with approval, groundbreaking likely is still at least a few months away, Cousino said. He added the company needs to finalize financing. Construction will take about five to six months.
Liquid Lifestyles offers swimming lessons for all ages at 10 rented Northeast Ohio locations.
Liquid Lifestyles makes use of pools at Sonesta Suites in Westlake, the Gemini Center in Fairview Park and the North Olmsted Recreation Center, among others.
“It’s a great business model until you run out of room,” Cousino said.
“We have grown to the point that we have run out of space at our partner facilities and the time has come for us to build our own state-of-the-art training facility,” wrote Cousino and partner Leah Nyikes in a letter to the city requesting a new use permit.
The company plans to use Myrtha Pools, modular pool systems that can come apart and be moved to another location if needed, city Economic Development Director Jim Bedell said last year. The building could be converted to office space if Liquid Lifestyles were not to succeed in that location, Cousino said.
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