Sorry, everybody else, but this is one of those times I have to go all-in, full-tilt, do-or-die East Dallas on you.
East Dallas! Listen to me! They're going to take Tietze Pool away from you!
Tietze Pool! One reason you moved into the Greater M Streets Area, also known as Far Outer Lakewood, also known as Old East Dallas, whatever the hell you want to call it. Tietze Pool! It's cool! It's one of the top cool things.
You can walk to it. Almost maybe. It's old and funky. Everybody's there. It's not some all-white country club. You feel like you're in a real city. Tietze Pool is the cool little jewel at the heart of East Dallas about a mile and a half west of White Rock Lake and a mile and a half east of Central Expressway, two and a half miles south of Northwest Highway and two and a half miles north of I-30.
Away. Gone. Dug up. Filled in. Nothing. That's the plan. If you don't believe me, look at the City Council briefing below. The briefing is three years old, but the issue is bubbling up right now behind the scenes because the city of Rowlett has offered Dallas some $32 million for Elgin B Robertson Park, a 257-acre peninsula in Lake Ray Hubbard that is outside the Dallas city limits. The proceeds from such a sale, if it takes place, have been set aside to fund a major rehab of the city's system of municipal pools. The minute Elgin Robertson sells, and that could happen any day, Tietze Pool's days will be numbered.
Count on it: They will have all kinds of reasons. Overlapping service areas. Oh, yeah, that's a huge problem. We all wake up every morning and think, "Oh my God, what are we going to do about these overlapping service areas?" If we've got an overlapping service area, we should just blow up the whole pool and fill it with rubble. Better no pool at all than an overlapping service area.
Or my favorite: maintenance. The city has to spend half a million bucks a year maintaining existing pools because they're old and worn out. So the way to trim that down is to spend $40 million building brand-new pools that won't be worn out. And that $40 million, if we spent it instead on maintenance, that would amount to how many years? Help me a little here. English major, you know. Got my trusty Eberhard pencil to my lips now getting it wet, sweeping all the eraser dust off my sheet of paper. Ummmm ... $40 million would be 80 years of maintenance by my arithmetic.
Wait, wait. 'Nother reason to kill Tietze Pool, and it's my own personal favorite worst reason for killing Tietze Pool is that they have to hurry up and do something quick with the money from the Elgin Rpbertson sale or somebody will steal it. Well, you know, not steal it maybe in the cops and robbers sense but get their hands on it and spend it all on something like a floating bar for Park Cities teenagers on White Rock Lake.
In other words, the argument is that the city needs to hurry up and announce a plan for what they're going to do with their windfall money before the money melts away. What they want to do is replace all of the city's neighborhood and regional pools with "aquatic centers" -- places with water slides, spray pools, lazy rivers and huge parking lots so people in the city can have a crappy version of what life could be if they lived in the suburbs.
OK, given that Tietze is the second most heavily attended swimming pool in Dallas after Lake Highlands, then after they fill in the old pool they'll build an aquatic center at Tietze, right? Wrong. Three reasons.
One. Nobody in the area around Tietze wants a big, brash, high-traffic, drive-to, fake suburban water park next to them, which is why they live near Tietze.
Two. As soon as you talk about spending money for something new, it has to be FAIR. And what is FAIR? FAIR is the exact same amount of money spent on the same amount of water park in each city council person's district. So you pay absolutely no attention to the high historical usage at Tietze Pool. You pay absolutely no attention to the role Tietze has played in germinating the rich sense of community all around it.
You bulldoze it. You leave nothing in its place but dirt. Then you build a bunch of generic weak-ass imitations of commercial water parks and stick them around the city, evenly spaced, of course, so you will eliminate that really big problem everybody was so incredibly worried about before -- overlapping service areas. And that brings us to the last reason:
Reason Three: That way you avoid trouble. If you can come up with a plan that is equally useless for all, serving equally non-existent constituencies, everyone will be equally defeated by the FAIRNESS doctrine, and there will be no trouble.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
So, East Dallas, you know your part here. It's time for you to step up to the line and do what you do so well. Unless you want to lose Tietze Pool, you need to blow up the whole deal, KABOOM! Make lots and lots of trouble. Go down there and make them rue the day they thought they could take Tietze away from you and you wouldn't notice. And, please, do tell them to put their service areas where the sun don't shine.
The rest of you? Sorry to interrupt.