Ferndale Residents Rally for Community Pool on Facebook Page

How would you feel about a community swimming pool in Ferndale?

Do you think the city of Ferndale should have a community swimming pool?

There's a new Facebook page where residents are rallying around the idea and discussing possible ways to make it happen.

The Ferndale Community Pool Campaign page was started on Aug. 22 by resident Carey Gustafson and already has 326 "likes."

"This page was created to start a conversation. Can we afford it? Do we want it? Where would it go?" the page description reads. Read more here.

A community pool has been discussed in the past - one resident posted an image of a city pool plan designed in 1970, titled "Ferndale Municipal Swimming Pool." You can find that photo here.

Ferndale Mayor Dave Coulter said he heard discussions of a pool resurfacing and asked City Manager April Lynch to look into what exactly the costs might be.

"This has been an ongoing issue ever since I moved to Ferndale," Coulter said. "Every couple of years it gets raised again and the answer has always come down to the expense, and not the cost to build the pool but the liability and the ongoing maintenance of the pool has been the killer of all the previous plans."

One of the issues is insurance, which Coulter said is "astronomical" on a public pool.

"We're going to look into it again," he said.

Ferndale Recreation Director Jill Manchik said she is familiar with the Facebook page and is currently researching the issue, including looking at previous master plans.

Ferndale_1986 August 28, 2012 at 02:08 PM
a community pool is a really stupid idea. priority should be servicing and upgrading our existing park infrastructure. two of our parks have rotten wooden play structures which need to be replaced. one of our major parks (Harding) has no play structure at all. many of the other play structures and swing sets in our parks are in disrepair due to lack of funds and staff at the city yard. in case anyone hasn't noticed, the city is broke and someone is talking frills like a community swimming pool? let's stick this pool idea in the white elephant boondoggle column. we don't need another blunder like the curling club that the city is on the hook to pay for the next 89 years.
Nic Steele August 28, 2012 at 02:56 PM
Personally, I don't use the parks, but I would definitely use a pool. I saw that there was one in Pleasant Ridge the other day, and was jealous. I don't know enough about the business aspect of a community to justify the cost. Also, There's a curling club?
T. Scott Galloway August 28, 2012 at 03:58 PM
The City isn't broke, but doesn't currently have the resources for a multi-million dollar project like a community swimming pool. Land on Hilton Road at College or Academy was acquired for that purpose years ago, but that land has since been sold to a developer who built three houses on the site. The East Side Activities Center houses the Detroit Curling Club which paid for construction in Hilton Road Park. The Club leases the space from the City and provides curling classes through the recreation department.
Jennifer August 28, 2012 at 04:42 PM
The City of Oak Park has a community pool that they can not keep open the full summer because of the high expenses. This pool is open to non-residents at very affordable rates. Perhaps instead of investing in building a new structure the City could further their partnership with Oak Park so Ferndale residents can use the Oak ark pool at the same rate as Oak Park residents. This might allow them to keep their pool open longer while providing a benefit to Ferndale. http://www.oakpark-mi.com/recreation/municipal_pool.html
10-Year Tax Payer August 28, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Can we get a "Grumpy Old Man Park" where they all can sit around and bitch at each other? Oh wait... that's Mcdonalds...
Ferndale Resident August 28, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Would it be possible to have the pool, but have the Recreation Department not be in charge of it, i.e, have it managed and funded privately? I ask, because last I heard, the Recreation Department is pretty broke and I'm not sure they can handle such a large project right now. That aside, I wholly support a public pool. Surrounding communities have one and it adds to their appeal from an outside perspective. Communities like Oak Park can advertise their pool, and that certainly draws peoples' interest. If Ferndale wants to be seen as a modern, family-friendly city, they need to consider this because things like this pool will be a big draw to people looking for a family-friendly city. And heck, a ton of us residents want it and are willing to accept a tax increase if it gets done, so why not?
Linda Baker August 28, 2012 at 07:19 PM
everytime I hear about the city wanting to increase taxes for sidewalks maintenance or infrastructure improvements or just about anything, people are up in arms because they feel that taxes are already too high. If I remember correctly, The PR Pool was originally funded by people who bought shares in the pool and became the users - it changed from a buy a membership pool to a city pool when the new pool was built a few years ago. I certainly would have supported a pool.
Carey Gustafson August 28, 2012 at 08:44 PM
When you go eat at a restaurant it's not free, you pay to be there. The overhead, employees and food itself. And the Community Center or local High School don't put up the money to build the restaurant, a private group or investment team does. The Old Navy building sat on our main corner for 5 years. Remember that?! Now look at it! We need the aquatic version of Chris & Tiffany Best to take that mid-century proposal from 40 years ago and do some laps with it. I pay $14 every time I take my daughter to that Red Oaks water park in Mad. Heights. We drive there, stay for two hours and leave. I would MUCH rather pay that every month in dues as a member and go swimming down the street!
Easydude August 28, 2012 at 09:31 PM
I can imagine, lack of interest due to residents from Ferndale. I can invision Detroit and Royal Oak Township residents as guest of a host family residing in Ferndale. NO POOL....
Ferndale_1986 August 28, 2012 at 11:28 PM
@10-Year Tax Payer Can we get a "Clueless GenX Park" where they all can sit around and text and tweet each other about their newest iPhones? Oh wait... that's Starbucks...
Ferndale_1986 August 29, 2012 at 04:05 AM
I believe the 99-year agreement the city signed in 2001 with the Detroit Curling Club obligates the city each year to pay 1/2 of the 12-month operating expenses of the building. Correct me if I'm wrong on this. Now tell us how many days the City actually used the "East Side Activities Center" for any recreational activities in 2011. Then tell us how much the City spent in 2011 to meet their share of the expenses of the building. Then tell us the total amount the City has spent in 10 years for operating this facility since 2002 when the Detroit Curling Club opened up the building. Then try to defend this deal.
Ferndale_1986 August 29, 2012 at 06:10 AM
"The Club leases the space from the City and provides curling classes through the recreation department." rent is $1 per year?
Alison Oster August 29, 2012 at 01:19 PM
What a great idea! It's nice to see a logical suggestion instead of just complaints and negativity.
Amy Francis September 02, 2012 at 12:44 PM
I second this idea! What a great solution. The Oak Park pool is wonderful and so close. When it closed we went to the Southfield pool, which is beautiful and inexpensive, but a bit of a hike.
Bob September 04, 2012 at 09:37 PM
Pleasant Ridge uses our Fire Department why can't we use their pool?
Ferndale Resident September 04, 2012 at 11:24 PM
In thinking about it, would we -want- to use their pool? I imagine us pitiful little Ferndalians would get a bunch of awkward glances and stuff if we did. We may as well just fund our own at this point.
10-Year Tax Payer September 05, 2012 at 12:29 AM
@Ferndale 1986 Oh wait... NOW you want to change your mind on a Ferndale pool! (Please see the first comment you posted on this tread). No problem Pops! You can change your mind! lol! Anyway enough with the negativity... I would also support a publicly funded pool in Ferndale, even if I had to pay slightly higher taxes.
10-Year Tax Payer September 05, 2012 at 12:43 AM
@Ferndale_1986 Um... that would be generation "Y"... but you have point!
Ferndale_1986 September 05, 2012 at 01:33 AM
@10-Year Tax Payer i think you have me confused with someone else.


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