Mayor didn’t listen |

Mayor didn’t listen

(This letter was originally addressed to Mayor Helen Klanderud.)

Two years ago you based your campaign for mayor on, “I’ll listen,” unlike City Council and mayoral candidate Andrew Kole who started the “Shut up Toni!” campaign

You wrote that you would look at the final plans for the new pools and ice just to make sure that everything was A-OK, as there was still time to make changes to the pools.

1. Politician I’m not. A swim coach I am.

2. I am a coach who was very concerned about pool depths, deck space widths and staging areas chosen for the competitive swim team, diving team, and handicapped and public areas in the new Aspen Recreation Center.

I was relieved when you were elected to know you said, “I’ll listen,” because despite my pleas and tears the City Council before you (Mayor Rachel Richards, Councilmen Tony Hershey and Tom McCabe) would take no final look at my concerns!

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Then much to my horror, instead of easy solutions my questions in your City Council meetings prompted threats of restraining orders and the marshal coming to take me away if I persisted in my quest to get a few simple but necessary changes made.

While the new pools are breathtakingly beautiful, functionally:

The warm water pool is not deep enough for those who cannot walk on their own.

U.S. Swimming recommends that Aspen’s new pool be used for training purposes and Basalt’s pool be used for meets due to the available deck space at Basalt’s pool.

U.S. diving believes Aspen has a “diminished facility” (diving board in lap pool).

The staging area for an inside pool is outside.

No bleachers, lockers or team room for swimmers.

Due to a lack of spectator area, parents are not allowed to stand on the deck to watch kids swim or play unless they pay an admission fee, have a pass or use the 10-minute guest pass.

At Monday night’s council meeting, you asked, “What can be done?” I replied, “Nothing. It’s too late to dig a little deeper or push a wall out a little further. The facility opened two weeks ago.”

But after some thoughtful consideration, there is only one solution. More pools.

Toni Kronberg