Letter To The Editor: Response To Splash Pad Debate

Los Alamos

I wanted to respond with a different perspective to the Splash Pad project proposal than that of the letter recently sent in by Martha Jones (link).

  • While I do agree that as a taxpayer in town, it would be nice to have a say in how money is spent, I have to disagree with her assertions that this is a bad idea for the following reasons:
  • Cost – the grand total for this project is $720,000 with a $36,000 per year maintenance cost ($3,000 per month). When compared with the other projects the County is looking at, this is extremely low.
  • Ms. Jones stated that it would only be used 2 months out of the year – I can guarantee it would be used a great deal more than this. The outdoor pools are open and used from May – September and if they were open longer, would absolutely be used more! Every parent I know has kids who would make use of it from at least April – October on any day when the temp hits near 70 or higher. My kids have already been out 3 times this year alone playing in the water on days where it was warm.
  • The fact that it would be in White Rock is a great thing – most friends our age with young kids live in White Rock because the housing is more affordable.  We live on the hill and the first thing I thought when I saw the project proposal was “That sounds awesome, I’d go to White Rock for the kids to play in it.”  It’s a great way to get more of the community visiting White Rock and I’m sure would boost some of the businesses there with people going to lunch and grabbing coffees.
  • Ms. Jones also questioned how many kids would use this – and again, as a parent with young kids and knowing a huge amount of families in the community, I know a LOT will.  Firstly, not all young families can afford a pool membership which you have to have in order to take advantage of the outdoor pools. A splash pad is a wonderful alternative. Secondly, with young toddlers, it’s a lot of work to go to the pool. You have to go in the water with them and make sure they don’t run in case they slip and fall in. It is more work for the parents then is worth the trip in a lot of cases. With a splash pad, you can let your toddler roam and have fun without any risk of drowning. Thirdly, as stated before, the pools are only open end of May – beginning of September. The splash pad would allow water play outside of these times, giving parents a good option on hot days when the pools are shut (and we still get plenty of those!)

I know not everyone in the community will feel benefit from it – but I think enough people would that it makes it worth investing in.