Editor, The News:
It is a mystery why Maple Ridge council keeps steering us in the direction of their made-up ‘if not an outdoor pool, then nothing’ ultimatum.
A new indoor pool is still a viable option until the people of Maple Ridge say otherwise – and so far nobody has bothered to ask us. The new pool is just too big and expensive of an issue for the council to decide on their own.
So here’s a suggestion for the council: if you think “alternative approval” is fare tactics (it’s the business equivalent to negative option billing, which is banned by Canadian law), why don’t you add the new indoor pool option back to the wish-list?
Now, since we’re on the market for a new pool, let’s do what every responsible buyer is supposed to do – a market analysis.
And what’s the best example to look at if not Surrey, with its six indoor and eight outdoor pools?
There is a major problem: none of the eight outdoor pools are open beyond the summer months. But we’re different somehow, right?
Of the six indoor pools, only the oldest two are 25 metres, two are 37 metres and the newest ones are 50 metres. That’s because a 50 m pool is not only the Olympic standard, but is also a bigger bang-for-the-buck.
About bucks – not sure where the $70 million estimate came from – Surrey’s Grandview Heights Aquatic Centre cost under $45 million.
And no, I didn’t pick the old and small one just to make a point. Opened in 2016, it’s a state of the art, three-level, 90,000-square-feet Cadillac of the pool world. It has a good balance of pro-athlete and recreational capabilities.
And, the icing on the cake: it was built in less than two years.
Say you expect your family to grow and are looking at options of how to deal with a small, unreliable old clunker of a car. What would be the better investment: $45,000 for a brand new fuel-efficient minivan or $25,000 for a bicycle and a rebuild?
Editor, The News:
The elaborate $60 million recreational package, which will have ongoing maintenance costs, those which have not been disclosed, should be put to a proper vote since the citizens of Maple Ridge will have to pay for it all.
The process of getting 10 per cent negative vote by the public going to city hall is ludicrous.
That is probably why it requires provincial approval – to protect the taxpayers.
Ron M. Jones