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Neighbors in Town of Tonawanda speak out against transforming Brighton Pool

"We don't want to lose a pool"
Posted at 11:31 PM, Jul 17, 2019

TOWN OF TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — Michelle Boctor learned how to swim at Brighton Pool years ago, but this staple may soon be transformed into an ice arena instead. Last month, Town of Tonawanda leaders discussed a project that would turn the pool into an ice arena, adding a splash pad next to it.

"We feel that we pay enough taxes in this area that we deserve to keep a pool. We don't want to lose a pool and just have a splash pad," Boctor said. If the project moves forward, Boctor said she wants to see the plan revised to include a new pool in the area of the existing Brighton Pool.

"The people in this area value having a pool--an outdoor community pool where kids can go and swim and where families can go and swim," she said. More than 250 people have signed this online petition Boctor a week ago. Dozens more have signed a similar petition she's taken door-to-door.

"I certainly understand the concern that some of the residents may have, but we'll have three pools in the town and two splash pads," Town Supervisor Joe Emminger said in a phone interview. He said the current Brighton Pool costs the town money and it needs hundreds of thousands in repairs. The proposed hockey rink would instead make the town money.

Emminger wants to continue the discussion--both the good and the bad--around the proposed plan. He invites those with concerns, like Boctor, to reach out to him directly.

"The town isn't making this decision in a vacuum. We're looking at everything. We gotta look at the whole community," he said.