Pool Demolition Releases Flood of Emotion
The noise of the hammering on the pool at Ben Hill park set off a political hammering with just as much volume.
"Why are our facilities being torn down?," asked one area resident.
"A kid can not swim in a splash pad," said another.
"We've met with them over the last year and a half and we keep getting the run around," said Regina Goodwin.
At the root of the frustration, that money was allocated for the facilities years ago but was never spent, and now, in their current state, says the city, demolition is the answer.
"This is a whole fiasco if you ask me," saidTulsa city councilor Jack Henderson, not mincing words in his assessment of what this action means for the Bartlett administration.
"This is a death sentence for him as far as trying to be mayor in this city," he said.
"Whatever councilor Henderson says, he says," said Mayor Bartlett, stressing the safety risk of allowing the pool to sit vacant.
"People are going to get hurt and probably killed in that thing if we don't get rid of it," he said.
"I don't think this pool was dangerous," said mayoral candidate Bill Christiansen, capitalizing on the unrest in full campaign mode.
"It just seems to me that the neighbors and the people that live in this district are not being listened to," he said.
Is there a chance that the pool could eventually be rebuilt?
"We'll see if it makes sense," said Bartlett.
"When you tear down a swimming pool it ain't coming back," said Henderson.