Friday, June 27, 2008

Good grief...

I don't know what is WRONG with the lovely city of Manhattan.

There are THREE pools in this city...CiCo (stands for City/County for those wondering, and it's pronounced SEE-Koh), City Pool and Northview.

CiCo pool is on the west side of Manhattan, therefore, it's the most accessible and the one the kids are taking swim lessons at. Northview is on the northeast side...it's not necessarily a far drive...we've actually BEEN there a few times. It is not as crowded, but it is also not a very big pool.

City pool is in City Park...dead center of town. It is a big pool with a slide. Many of the summer daycamps use this as part of their programs (Little Apple Day Camp, Manhattan Boys & Girls Club, etc, etc). So it is VERY busy. One would think, since it's the most-used of all three, that it would be the one to get maintenance and be up to par.

Not so. Last year, they closed the pool three weeks early, due to cracks in the wall near the lighting systems (seriously...WHO needs lights in a city pool? They CLOSE before dark). So...the pool was closed...and the other two pools took up the slack. BUT...it was late in the season, school was about to start, so it REALLY wasn't that bad.

City Pool was drained...they did a lot of repair work. In the meantime, a bond issue was voted down by the public. This bond issue contained the money to repair or replace all three pools (replacing both City and Northview, and repairing CiCo)...but unfortunately, they packaged this money along with building some other stuff that no one wanted (including an indoor aquatics center). So, all the money needed for repairs/replacements was not approved.

Fast forward to now. City Pool was closed on Monday after engineers deemed that the pool had major structural issues...and more cracks. What does that mean?

Well, for the average person....it means nothing. But for a lot of kids, and PARENTS of kids, it means either schlepping kids to another pool further away, or finding something else to do with all that time. It means that all the lessons, lap swims, training for swim team, now has to take place elsewhere...in timeslots that are just NOT there. All three pools offer swim lessons in the same time slots. They are limited as to the amount of kids. So...does that mean that I'll be bumped (even though all my kids' lessons are PREPAID)? I surely hope not. I know that they're working to try and use K-State's Natatorium and the country club's private pool...so I'll pray for the best on THAT front.

For me, it means this: I paid $80 for a family pool pass, good at all three pools, though I would prefer to use it only at CiCo. Still wouldn't be an issue for me...except that NOW, the day camps and daycare centers are competing with the general public for the space. CiCo capacity is 450. On Tuesday, they were full by 2 p.m. They began using a one-out, one-in policy. This is not acceptable to families, mostly because they have a pool rule that no one under the age of 14 is allowed without someone 14 or older with them. (Gee, Sue, remember how young WE were going to the pool alone????). That means for me, that three people must leave the pool in order for us to get in. It also means that we would not be getting in at 1:00 p.m. - we have lessons from 11:15 a.m. to 11:50 a.m. Kids must be fed...so we have to dry them off, load them up, go home and eat. We'd have to rush thru a meal to get there by 1:00 p.m....and even then, the line would be massive. No thank you.

Luckily, the city will be offering a pro-rated refund. Don't really know what that means, but I'll take what I can get...and I'll be headed to Ft. Riley to buy a pool pass there. The pool there does NOT get crowded, and while I'll be burning gas to get there, I'd rather do that than not be able to take my kids swimming, or have to stand in line waiting (c'mon, just how long do you expect a 4 year old to stand in line, in the HOT sun, WAITING...it was NINETY-SIX degrees yesterday...I just don't see it happening).

Had the city not tried to make something HUGE out of simple repairs/replacements, we would have had a new pool for the kids to use. Now, we have a big mess.

4 comments:

the student said...

Oh Manhattan...what a mess.

I'm taking the kiddos to Howl a Dayz Inn out on 24 Highway :) They should be fine...they are going to be spoiled rotten, and the owner told me I can call daily to check on them. Thanks for the offer!

Sue said...

Lord I do remember being so young and on our own :) -- is that pool even still open? Strange one it was -- I just remember the shredded toes because of the "treatment" of the pool (read anti-slip) and we would burn the heck out of our feet and bums on the tarred outer area :)

Christy said...

That's just rediculous! I have to say I was one of those kids who at a fairly young age was dropped off by my dad on his way to work (so a little after 1 pm) and picked up by mom when she got off work (between 3-5 depending on the day and once a week we were there until 7..we'd go to my aunts for dinner then back to the pool if we wanted!).

But anyways...that is just rediculous that they didn't get the pools fixed. Of course big shocker that they'd stick it in a bill with other junk. Oh politians.

We liked both pools at Ft. Riley. The one on main post was nice and normally not too crowded. The one on the hill had recently been redone if memory serves me correctly. We ended up buying a nice pool our last 2 yrs there so we rarely went to the post pools. JC also has a nice pool, pretty big, my boys LOVED it. It's a longer drive, but your kids would probably like it as a special treat.

saintseester said...

Ugh, what a pain! You'd think they could have thought this up before the season started.

Don't get me started on pool maintenance issues.