Last Monday night I had a candidates’ night over on Burkhardt. I noticed the church had a rim out back without a net- and that there were courts just up the street that I hadn’t put nets on. Unfortunately, my ladder wasn’t in the car (my mom had been grocery shopping) so I went back Tuesday morning before work and took down the rusted chains and put up 3 nets- stickers and stencils.
The park was in horrible shape. According to Google maps- it’s called Orville Wright park. Orville would have been ashamed. The courts were strewn with broken glass- and weeds. The backboards were rusted. The playground equipment had a wall of weeds- taller than the kids it was designed for- and trash was everywhere. I made a plan to come back on Saturday to clear it.
Friday I got a message of Facebook from a woman, Tabatha Muntzinger, who lives near the park, but hadn’t taken her kids there until Friday. She was disgusted and had seen my stickers- and looked me up, and was trying to figure out who owned it- the city or Dayton Public Schools. I told her I was planning on going there on Saturday to clean it up. She said she’d help. So today at 11, we started. We had help from her husband Kyle, who used to teach Social Studies at Belmont, and Lewis Gast and his stepson John. Four and a half hours later it looked totally different. Some neighborhood kids even showed up and helped. We filled Lewis’s pickup truck with weeds- just from the courts. Tabatha repainted the 3 backboards. A neighbor from across the street came by and thanked us.
But what really ticked me off today, was the announcement in the paper that the city commission just approved half a million dollars to demolish four remaining outdoor pools. Burkham, Mallory, FROC and Stuart Patterson. We always seem to have money for demolition- but, we can’t find the money to put up nets and paint backboards and repair basketball rims.
Dayton will demolish its four shuttered outdoor swimming pools, finishing the transition to splash parks as its primary outdoor aquatic attraction.
Dayton City Commission this week approved a $545,232 contract with Belgray Inc. to demolish the closed pools and pool houses at Burkham, Five Oaks, Mallory and Stuart Patterson Park.
The same contract includes $215,000 to expand and upgrade the Mc-Intosh Park splash park and $80,000 to begin smaller improvements at the Five Oaks, Mallory and Stuart Patterson splash parks.
Splash parks are small, zero-depth water play areas that spray water from colorful structures….
The city once had seven outdoor swimming pools, but Parlette said six of them closed between 2004 and 2009, leaving the Fairview pool near Good Samaritan Hospital as the only outdoor option. The city has indoor pools at its three recreation centers.
Apparently, kids don’t really count for Commissioners Whaley and Williams- because they don’t donate to their campaigns.
Of course, you can’t learn to swim in a splash park- and the Army doens’t have a splash park test. So more poor kids won’t know how to swim- something that can save their lives- and also – is a great way to stay out of trouble in the summer.
In fact, while the five of us were doing what the city couldn’t I had to see this on my Facebook feed:
And, we got treated to hear that the $40 million or so we “invested” in Tech Town- may have a tenant for the empty building- soon. Really? We have money to build buildings with public money, for private companies- while we don’t have money to put up nets? Tech Town is corporate welfare- taking our tax dollars and subsidizing a few businesses- read on:
Two years after it was built, Tech Town business park’s newest building may soon have a tenant that occupies an entire floor, the president of Citywide Development said Friday.
“We have, right now, someone who has executed an L.I.
— that is, a letter of intent — for a floor” in Tech Town III, the third and newest building in the technology-oriented business park on Dayton’s northeastern edge, said Steve Budd, Citywide president.
“I can’t tell you who that is right yet,” he added.
Though used for community expos and meetings from time to time, the $9.1 million building that offers more than 60,000 square feet of space has remained empty since construction was completed.
The $40 million Tech Town business park has three buildings. The two older buildings are almost full, officials of Citywide have said. Citywide, the city of Dayton’s development arm, owns the park and acts as landlord to tenants there.
In the pool article- there was this line:
“Quite frankly, (pools) are just more costly to maintain and operate,” Parlette said, citing staffing costs, water, chemicals and more. Parlette would not estimate a cost difference between pools and splash parks, except to say “it’s a big number.”
Mr. Parlette, pools are for everyone. Tech Town is corporate welfare. I’m sure, $40 million would have kept our pools open.
That’s a big number.