[act-ma] 3/1 "Don't Dump Cement in the deep end of the DCR McCrehan Pool in Cambridge!" (Thurs)

James in Cambridge tompaine at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 25 19:35:59 PST 2012

  [Friends: This is an important matter for people who enjoy the "Commonwealth's" DCR-operated pool in North Cambridge   near the Alewife T Station. Especially important for young people, families with kids and, above all, poor and lower-income   people who can't afford a week or two on Martha's Vineyard for their summer vacations. There is a major public housing   development across the street -- Jefferson Park -- and the not-so-attractive Rindge Towers (now "Fresh Pond' Apts...."), two   of the original three buildings of which have an owner who continues to receive subsidies for lower-income tenants. [These   were what were known as "expiring use" buildings.] These residents and families need recreation opportunities we can enjoy!     For some additional background, please see my "letter to the editor," which is included at the bottom. 
                                                                                                   cheers*  James Williamson                                                                                                                Co-President, Jefferson Park Tenant Council*                                                                                                                            (* for identification purposes only)     ]

Department of Conservation and Recreation Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Thursday, March 1, 2012 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Andrew Peabody School Auditorium 70 Rindge Avenue, Cambridge
At the public meeting, DCR will present plans to modernize the Francis J. McCrehan Memorial Swimming Pool in Cambridge, including design and construction plans. Potential future site amenities to the pool area will also be discussed.
The project is scheduled for completion over the next four months, and the modernized facility is planned to be open for the public’s enjoyment in time for the upcoming pool season. The Patrick-Murray Administration has set aside approximately $400,000 for the project.
If you have questions about the public meeting, please email DCR.Updates at state.ma.us or call 617-626-4974.
Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request by emailing Agatha Summons-McGuire at asummons at state.ma.us or by calling her at 617-626-1282. Please provide Ms. McGuire with a description of the accommodation you will need, including as much detail as you can, as well as information on how she can contact you if more information is needed. Please allow at least one week (7 days) advance notice to Ms. McGuire of a need for reasonable accommodations; last-minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill. To request materials in accessible formats (Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), please also contact Ms. McGuire.

Subject: Letter to the Editor: "Don't Dump Cement in the Deep End of the McCrehan Pool!"Date: Fri, 24 Feb 2012 19:44:53 +0000To the Editor:  The state DCR have announced that they will conduct a public meetingon their "plans" for the McCrehan Pool in North Cambridge (off Rindge Ave.near Russell Field and the Alewife T Station) this Thursday, March 1, at6:30 p.m. at the Peabody School on Rindge Ave.  The DCR's "plan" is to fill the deep end of the McCrehan Pool with cement.  If properly managed and adequately staffed, any risks involved in theenjoyment of a pool with a deep end can be minimized. This has been welldemonstrated here in Cambridge. Closing off the deep end of the pool whennecessary, spot safety checks, required swim tests, etc., are some of the waysthis has been achieved.  Why ruin everyone's responsible fun and pleasure everywhere because theDCR were negligent in their supervision of management at a pool in New Bedford,where a woman who could not swim was allowed to use the deep end of their pool,and whose body then went inexplicably -- and tragically -- "undiscovered" for two days!  The DCR should be addressing and correcting their own negligence, and nottaking it out on everyone else by taking what must seem to them -- and the overpaid liabilitylawyers they over-rely on when it comes to public policy -- like "the easy way out,"  but only for them, not for us, who enjoy this pool.  The McCrehan Pool also just happens to be an internationally renowned SkateboardBowl in the off-season, known as the "C-Bowl." (Look it up on youtube!)    Must we fill this swimming pool with cement, ruin responsible fun for hundredsof under-served kids, and close off forever a unique recreation spot at the same time? Waste money on cement, and pay to build "skateboard parks" elsewhere whereno one wants or will use them??   I hope the DCR will listen to us (and their own demonstrably more responsible localstaff here in Cambridge) at this meeting.  And I hope you, dear reader, will be there, as well.                                                                      "Deeply" concerned,                                                                              James Williamson                                                                              1000 Jackson Place                                                                              Cambridge, MA
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