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Letter: New pool should best serve community

Published: Thursday, April 25, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

To the Editor:

On April 19, the Daily Chronicle argued that the new Park commissioners “should remember that delaying a decision [about the pool] does not equal solving a problem.” We would like to respond.

1. The commissioners-elect are not after a “stamp” on the pool; we want a pool that will best serve the community.  

2. The Chronicle’s editorial says, “If that amount of money must be spent, why not spend it building a new, modern and accessible facility with amenities that could attract more people?” The new commissioners agree, and that’s why we feel so strongly that the current design is wrong. The current design presented by PHN Architects will attract more people, but won’t allow them all to swim since the overall capacity is 300 bathers less, and the swimming area is 33 percent less than the existing pool.

3. The Chronicle urges haste in approving the pool since costs are expected to rise. But recently in this market, an increase of approximately 2 percent is typical for each year a project is delayed, due to labor and material price increases.

This comes to approximately $100,000 the first year, $102,000 the second year and so on. But the park will save about $350,000 in bond payments for each year the project is reconsidered. These savings could be set aside to pay for the increase in cost, decrease the amount required to bond, and be put toward immediately-required repairs at the Hopkins Park pool.

The savings could also be put towards needs such as the playground replacement project that has been delayed until 2019 because of the pool costs.

4. The Chronicle asserts that the pool is like an “old car” that needs to be replaced. But when shopping for a new car for your family of five, would you settle on a four-seater, or would you find a car that your family of five will be comfortable in, even if you have to spend a few dollars for repairs while searching for the right car?

5. That a significant amount of time has been spent on the pool design doesn’t make it the right choice. This design has been the only one presented to the board and the public. No significant alternatives that maintain or increase the bather capacity of the pool have been presented.

Phil Young

Commissioner, DeKalb Park District

Per Faivre, Keith Nyquist, Don Irving

Commissioners-elect, DeKalb Park District

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