North Hempstead residents and town officials agree that the pool at Clinton G. Martin Park in New Hyde Park is long overdue for a makeover, but they are divided over what shape the renovation should take.
After a community meeting last week, discussion continued Tuesday at a public hearing to authorize $12.9 million in bonds for updates to the pool and tennis facility.
“The facility needs repairs . . . and a face-lift to make the pool more appealing to members of the district,” said Supervisor Judi Bosworth. “But the final determination about the pool will be based on the input from the residents of the special park district.”
Though residents voiced concerns about the project’s schedule and costs, the board voted unanimously to authorize bonding.
The pool, which was built in the early 1960s, is essentially cobbled together with “glue and duct tape,” joked Marianna Wolgemuth, a member of the park advisory committee. Nearly half of the $15 million project cost is dedicated to pool improvements, such as replacing its shell liner and filter system, and reconfiguring the deck.
At last week’s meeting, engineers and architects discussed the project and presented preliminary designs to about 200 residents. J. Robert Holzmacher, of Ronkonkoma-based JRH Holzmacher Engineering, emphasized that the pool’s footprint will not change.
In addition to necessary pool repairs, other changes include moving the locker rooms, resurfacing and relighting the tennis courts, and adding a spray park and slide for the children, said Jeremy Linzee of Patchogue-based bld architecture.
The idea of a large children’s slide in the main pool area raised the ire of some residents, who said lap lanes would be compromised. Others spoke in support, saying that the pool now offers few attractions for children and that a slide would boost ebbing membership. Prices for seasonal memberships vary, but rates include $88 for seniors and $248 for a family.
Subscriptions have been declining by about 100 members annually for the past few years, said parks Commissioner Jill Weber, adding that this summer the town hopes to maintain last year’s membership of about 1,200 residents.
The pool is open to members of the New Hyde Park Special Park District, which bounds the village of New Hyde Park and unincorporated areas of North New Hyde Park, Manhasset Hills, Searingtown, Herricks and Garden City Park. There are 12,877 properties that pay taxes in this area, said town spokeswoman Carole Trottere.
The 2016 adopted budget allotted about $1 million for the pool: $673,000 to be raised by property taxes and $371,000 from subscription revenue.
The renovation costs will also be defrayed by park district residents. Property owners in a home with an assessed value of $292,000 pay $24.50 in property taxes. If the town does bond, the tax levy will rise to $35.43 in the first five years, and then jump to $67.01 for the next 15 years.
The board would later seek a second bond authorization for the project’s remaining cost of about $2 million, Trottere said.
The town will soon conduct a mailed survey, also available online, to further gauge the community’s response.
Proposed project schedule
- July 1, 2016: Project to be finalized
- Sept. 1, 2016: Permit to be submitted to Nassau County DOH
- Dec. 1, 2016: Final design and project bidding documents to be completed
- Jan. 1, 2017: Project out to bid
- February 2017: Contract to be awarded
- April 1, 2017: Project contract to be executed
- Construction timeline: 12 to 14 months
- June 1, 2018: Estimated completion date