The City of Kirkland’s “Proposition No. 1 formation of Kirkland Aquatics and Recreation District” has a high probability of being unsustainable in the long run. This costly Taj Mahal style community indoor pool and recreation center will benefit a minority number of citizens at the expense of all property owners and renters in Kirkland. These publicly funded recreation centers do not work out eventually due to the costs exceeding the revenues. One example is Sequim’s Aquatic Recreation Center (SARC) which has expenses that have exceeded revenues almost every year of its 26 years of operation. At the present time SARC is considering collaborating with the YMCA just to be able to continue operating. Another example is the former King County’s Forward Thrust Pools which failed due to costs of operation and maintenance, and outdated facilities which would have been too costly to update.
It is naïve to think that a combined public indoor pool and recreation center would be “nice” to have because everyone “likes a pool” without considering the feasibility and long range costs of building the facility, operation and maintenance costs, and future improvements. In addition, it is not prudent use of local taxpayers’ dollars when all decision making is left in the hands of an elected group of people, instead of the majority who are paying for the facility.
Privately owned pools and recreation centers have always worked out better than publicly funded ones and generally provide a more desirable environment.
Don’t be swayed by emotions to having an indoor pool and recreation center without considering the exorbitant and never-ending costs necessary to build, run and maintain this Cadillac version put before the citizens of Kirkland by a minority of Kirkland leaders and citizens.
VOTE NO on Proposition 1 formation of Kirkland Aquatics and Recreation District!