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Nonprofit plans to open Olympic-sized swimming pool in north Minneapolis

The project aims to bridge the gap between minority communities and access to pools.

MINNEAPOLIS — Starting in November, the corner of Plymouth Avenue and Lyndale Avenue will transform from a warehouse to a V3 Community Center.

"We're going to have an instructional pool, a running track, and a community meeting space and a retail space," said V3 Sports Founder Erika Binger.

V3 is a nonprofit organization that works to solve the lack of swimming access among minority communities and provides equity in wellness opportunities. 

Binger says the center is something North Minneapolis really needs.

"There's a not a year-round publicly accessible pool," Binger said. "Nothing that is comprehensive for adults and families and then that also allows for that athletic competition."

Malik Rucker is the Director of Community Engagement for the V3 center and says kids in the area need a place to learn and compete.

"There hasn't been much investment into the north side of Minneapolis compared to other parts of Minneapolis and other places in the state," Rucker said. "Swimming, in general, is a life skill."

The funding for the V3 center is coming from donors, donations, corporate sponsorships and they are also trying to access federal and state funding. 

So far, enough money has been raised to break ground in November for the community center, but they still need more money to build the pool.

"We have a $4 million matching gift so if we're able to match that then we can begin phase one," Binger said.

Once the project is complete, the V3 center is sure to make a splash in the lives of kids and teens in North Minneapolis.

"We know that somebody will come from North Minneapolis and make the Olympic team in 10, 15 years," Binger said.