You mentioned the Pinkie Phillips Aquatics Center that the council approved. Apparently that didn’t satisfy those who want Tracy taxpayers to build more. When the city approved the $15.7 million “first phase” of the Ellis project, which only included the “recreation area,” it should have been obvious that this project was not only very costly but had other problems. Taxpayers would be stuck with subsidizing a white elephant forever. As you say, a judge killed the original Ellis development deal. Now, the city seems to have finally decided to pursue a private developer option for additional public swim facilities. I hope it works out, for the sake of young swimmers and taxpayers.
Tom Whitten, Tracy
Greater benefits to swim center than private park
I would like to advocate my support for the swim center for the City of Tracy. I have attended countless meetings for this cause, yet we are still trying to move forward. It is extremely important that we do not cut corners in the 11th hour. There have been countless hours that have gone into this project and it would be foolish to throw that all away. There are so many new jobs associated with this project; what with construction, pool maintenance, lifeguards, swim instructors, and even landscapers. Conversely, we have the Dr. Powers pool, which hasn’t been operational in several years, not to mention that it is already established and will not bring any new economic benefits to the region. As a member of the Tracy Triton coaching staff these last three summers and a member on the team for the last 12 years, I have been very involved in the swimming. Swim meets, especially invitationals, bring a lot of people to the area; they in turn purchase items from the stores in Tracy. Swim meets are also a fun way to bring the community together. This community can and will grow; it will benefit from a swim center, NOT an aquatic facility partnership with Wild Rivers. The last thing we want for Tracy is a private enterprise that builds a facility that is not community oriented. So in conclusion I feel that you should remain with the current plan to build a swim center with the Surland Cos. and abandon the idea of entering into a partnership with Wild Rivers.
Austin Lowe, Tracy