How do you keep an outdoor pool usable during a Chicago fall and winter?
One Winnetka family figured it out: You build a dome around it.
Winnetka residents Mike and Lee Ann Rechtin thought they had the perfect plan to get their pool in use nearly year-round, but a neighbor and local government didn’t think it was so perfect.
In late 2020, the family installed a temporary, inflatable dome over its in-ground swimming pool in the backyard of their home in the 100 block of Winnetka’s Fuller Lane.
Shortly thereafter, Winnetka officials received an anonymous complaint related to the dome from a neighbor of the Rechtins. Subsequently, in mid-November, the village issued the Rechtins a code violation, which is a warning letter and differs from a citation, the village said.
The Rechtins reached out to village staff before the end of 2020 to request that Winnetka’s Village Council consider adopting text amendments that allow a temporary pool dome without having to meet all of the zoning requirements.
Winnetka council members reviewed the applicant’s case during their Tuesday, May 18 meeting with the hope of providing staff direction regarding the dome so it could possibly be used this fall. Lee Ann Rechtin told the council that she planned to take down the dome this week.
Although the anonymous neighbor’s complaint sparked the code violation and amendment request, Lee Ann Rechtin’s hope of installing the pool dome first started in 2019.