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Longmire Park’s Public Building pictured March 5, 2012

This writer has long proclaimed the over $400,000 spent for a structure to house 8 flushing toilets at Yelm’s Longmire Park was a ridiculous amount of money for facilities that may see major use 4 months of a year during summer weather. I love the park and seeing families there. However, the expensive toilets structure was a misplaced decision, in my view.

One could build 2 nice $200,000 homes for the price of 8 flushing toilet suites and a concession stand –
AND that does not even include the additional $400,000 to put water and sewer pipes to the structure!

I grew up in Louisville, KY. and our park there had three baseball diamonds, tennis courts and a hockey field. Our park’s toilet structure had a men’s & women’s section on each side and an open breezeway in the center, on a building footprint the size of Yelm’s. That was always sufficient for Louisville teams when using the park, and built for under $50,000 in today’s dollars.

Amazing that Yelm’s has eight individual toilets, 8 individual sinks, 8 individual electric hand-dryers, 8 metal doors and on and on. I know jobs were provided for a short while, yet the almost 1/2 million dollar cost to this city and state during an economic downturn was incomprehensible for 8 individual flushing toilet suites then and still is today by any standard. And, the toilets grant money could have been used for a library structure, especially relative with the library purchase deal now loading over 1 million dollars of interest debt on the backs of city residents.

Now, Yelm’s golden park is showing signs of tarnish, as crime rises with the growth here, the park has been the recipient of juvenile vandalism that includes destruction to signage and spray-paint graffiti on dugouts and other buildings.
Note: see the differences in the pictures above and below, as an example!

Longmire Park’s Public Building pictured in 2010


Indeed, on a recent visit last week, I noticed that 2 of the toilets were not only locked, the door handles were removed. Two additional toilets were closed (presumably for winter) and most of the sleek signage has been vandalized and stolen.

This is a sad state for a jewel that the city says the public so much wanted and to a family name with a proud tradition in Yelm.

Posted by Steve on March 6, 2012 at 12:58 am | Permalink

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