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Council Tabs Former Walsh Pool Area for Skate Park

Council agreed Tuesday to proceed with relocating the borough's modular skate park to the Walsh Pool area on Harristown Road by the Dobrow Sports Complex.

With only a few weeks remaining for the borough to formalize the or risk losing county open space grant funding for the project, council has selected the former Walsh Pool as the skate park's new destination.

"We, as a council, made a commitment that we would do this," Deputy Mayor Ed Trawinski said Tuesday. "And I think it’s something that we need to try here, do our best to enforce our rules and regulations and give it a shot. I can’t think of a better location in Fair Lawn -- if we’re going to put it anywhere -- that we could put it."

Last June, the borough opened the Warren Point Annex Skate Park at a converted tennis court on 30th Street and Pellack Drive, but the set up lasted less than a month before .

Trawinski said the new proposed location -- on Harristown Road adjacent to the -- should be more palatable to residents.

"There’s no residents affected by this," he said. "It’s proximate to the Dobrow Complex, but the Dobrow Complex is first and foremost a recreation complex."

Deputy Mayor John Cosgrove, the only council member who opposed the relocation, said he had spoken to residents and organizations that used the Dobrow Complex regularly and found strong opposition to the skate park.

"If you had a skate park that was somewhere for 30 days and they pulled it out and they want to build it in your neighborhood, what would you think?" Cosgrove said. "People say, 'You’re giving us the problem that you had on the other side of town and you’re moving it to our side of town.'"

While Cosgrove said he applauded the concept and would love to see kids have a place to skateboard legally in Fair Lawn, he didn't believe there was any location in town where residents would accept a skate park.

Trawinski responded that he felt obligated to honor the commitment the previous council had made to provide resident skateboarders a spot of their own.

"What do you tell those kids? Where are they supposed to go?" asked Trawinski, referring to the children who, after being chased out of the CVS parking lot by police, had approached council looking for a legal place to skate. "We bend over backwards through an organized sports program to provide activities for all kinds of organized sports, but we don’t do it for kids like that who ask for it. And they’re entitled to as much ability to use borough and borough facilities as those who participate in organized sports."

The borough, which already has spent $35,000 on the park and its equipment -- pieces of which are currently in storage -- is prepared to spend an additional $25,000 to fill Walsh Pool, surface the new skate park and enclose it with fencing.

Borough manager Tom Metzler said he was cautiously optimistic that the $15,000 filling costs could be mitigated if the borough can obtain certified clean fill from another construction project, bringing the total relocation price tag to about $10,000.

Once the project is completed -- Metzler estimated it would be another year before the skate park is ready for use -- the borough will receive a $35,000 reimbursement from the county.

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A.Tourney May 31, 2012 at 03:12 AM
The first compound fracture that results in a lawsuit will close it down ....
Stuart Pace May 31, 2012 at 04:27 AM
@hypo- this is spending 35K to not lose the 35K grant. its now a 75k skate park because the prior council made awful decisions. this is not the year to double the error. I think an ADA park would be perfect there.....just not this year. And I would keep Walsh and close memorial.
Stuart Pace May 31, 2012 at 04:28 AM
wow bad math at 12 30 at night. nice going Pace.
Michael Agosta May 31, 2012 at 06:59 AM
The tax assessment decreased my house value 8% and my taxes are increasing 4%. 2013 cannot come fast enough.
Bruce Knuckle May 31, 2012 at 11:12 AM
I think 3 big tops would fit there nicely. The council can then have their meeting their alongside the skateboarding "athletes"
Jenne May 31, 2012 at 11:26 AM
We already have cops hanging out there for traffic stops, etc. Because it's at the Maple ave exit for 208, it's hardly out of sight! In fact, it's more visible than many other parts. And there's a fire company right across the street. Parks and recreation is there to maintain the Fair Lawn Sports outsourced fields (though not the other areas, sigh). Do all of you have any evidence that skaters are somehow all these criminals that you people accuse them of being/attracting??
Jenne May 31, 2012 at 11:31 AM
Have you looked at Walsh Pool lately? It would need work to be re-opened, including dredging-- and if we left it one more year it would probably turn into a protected wetland! Much as I'd like to see Walsh reopened as a pool (and the Skate park go to Memorial, in some of the extra parking lot, but frankly that's not going to happen, as the skaters don't have a Sports Association to demand funding on their behalf), Right now the Dobrow facilities are only opened when Fair Lawn Sports ask for them, otherwise forget it. And the few times I've gone in, they've been gross.
Jenne May 31, 2012 at 11:43 AM
So, if some alumni provides a scholarship for skateboarders at an institution of higher ed, that makes it a sport and thus worthy of support? And if higher ed stops offering scholarships for most sports, as they may do in this crisis of higher ed, they stop being sports? that's silly. Something doesn't have to be a competitive sport to have facilities in the park, or otherwise we'd have to find someone who offered scholarships for jogging, walking and playing on playground equipment.
Warren G May 31, 2012 at 02:00 PM
If the kids would follow the rules and be respectful to the property, then I would not have a problem with it. But you had kids leaving trash laying around, they would invite their friends from other towns, and they didn't care how they left the area. Bad idea. Just another area for kids to try and sneak into after hours and cause problems.
Tommy P May 31, 2012 at 02:38 PM
it already is a wetland.
Just Facts May 31, 2012 at 04:33 PM
Let the kids play... and right next to a park... This is an awesome idea.... Kids get chased from all over - and this out of the way - I say open the snack bar and sell snacks - generate money and feed those kids who burn energy - that is a great park and that pool needs a face lift anyway - try something new....Hurrayyy a nice idea.....right now it looks like a swamp from Vietnam...I say we have the former Mayor Y check for alligators first...
Sheila vanderweit May 31, 2012 at 09:39 PM
So Marty! We are the low income side of town. That's pretty good since we all pay high taxes in this town. Whatever side your live onust be the shitty side of town. Just because you live there. This town is all the low income side. You may think you know what goes on in the low income side but you have no idea what we make a year. I think you should watch what you say about us low income people. You can take your comment and shove it where the sun don't shine!
Deleted because of harassment June 01, 2012 at 12:39 AM
Marty must live on the rude and self-important side of town. As for filling in Walsh, has anyone bothered to check if it is deed-restricted. The land was gifted to the town for building the original pool, pre-dating Memorial. Besides being a former wetland, spending a bunch of money to move a park that was such a nuisance that the neighbors demanded it be moved to a remoter location is just plain dumb politics playing appeasement. In a year, they'll be p*ssing away more money to move it elsewhere after someone from outside of town discovers it and vandalizes it in the remote location. Put it in one of the parking lots at Memorial and be done with it.
Had Enough June 01, 2012 at 05:56 AM
Deed restricted, wetland, yup more lawsuits, I guess this time the Republican lawyers get paid, and they send us the bill.
Marty Cone June 01, 2012 at 11:06 AM
Shiela, Truth stings a little doesn't it. You can be assured, that this council put it there for the same reason they closed Walsh Pool. Its the seedy side of town and no one will complain. You are not in Radburn so don't expect the same treatment. Think it over while you sit in your converted summer bungalo.
Marty Cone June 01, 2012 at 11:07 AM
Yep, thats my side, from what I read coming from you, they should put it in your big mouth.
Emil DeLuccia June 01, 2012 at 01:08 PM
marty cone how dare you!!! i live in the columbia heights section of town or as you call it the low income section. my neighbors are hard working families who have more class than you'll ever know. it appears to me you show your ignorance every time you make a comment.
Go Figure June 01, 2012 at 03:10 PM
Just a couple of comments: (1) I think we need to give the kids a chance to show us that they can keep the area clean, safe and fun. I hope they learned their lesson from the last park. (2) Attacking the "republican" lawyers is not fair when you look at the bleeding that took place by "other" lawyers over the past 10 years. Do your research and look at the numbers, it's astounding. OPRA -- then make your partisan comments.
Jenne June 01, 2012 at 03:18 PM
The joggers, the jogger mommies, and the Fair Lawn Sports associates who frequent the park already leave trash lying around-- it's no coincidence in my mind that all the bottles I pick up and put in recycling when we visit are for water and gatorade. As for complaining about Fair Lawn kids who "invite friends from other towns" what a great example of what's wrong with Bergen County. My family moved here from another state where it's ok to use a playground not in your tax district, but after being approached at 2 different playgrounds by people bitching about non-town-residents using the parks, half my family won't even stop at a park or playground in North Jersey before checking to see that it's within our 'resident' boundaries. Literally, we had a discussion about whether it was OK to visit the playgrounds listed in a recent issue of NJ Parents!
Jenne June 01, 2012 at 03:20 PM
Yeah, and it would be LESS not more creepy if more people used it. Why would I feel safer when the only people in the park are me, my toddler and some male jogger?
Jenne June 01, 2012 at 03:27 PM
We've got people coming to council meetings to complain about the possibilities of teenagers using a park 6-8 blocks from their home being "SCARY" to them because they have young kids. These people live on a street where kids are literally playing sports (and skateboarding) in the street instead of walking/biking down to the park. It's clearly not about noise or trash, it's about people's beliefs about 'skaters' and 'outsiders.'
Deleted because of harassment June 02, 2012 at 02:21 AM
Marty, there's a proverb about better to remain silent and thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. You just removed all doubts anyone had about you. There's more than a little bit of what you are all about in every single one of your posts - and it's not about your community, but your ego and your self-interest. You remind me of someone that buys a BMW SUV because of the way they believe it makes them look to everyone else who can't park it straight or navigate a corner without driving up the curb. The opinion you generate is not the one you hoped for.
Deleted because of harassment June 02, 2012 at 02:26 AM
And, if there is any location that would be more suitable for an enclosed, cement, year-round pool than the current Walsh location...so yeah, let's spend money filling it in. That's Fair Lawn political logic at it's finest.
I.Can.Park June 02, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Wow! Deleted, youre panties are in a bunch and while you are entitled to answer ole coney WHY pick on us Beemer owners? Kinda hypocritical dontcha think!?!
BellairBerdan June 02, 2012 at 04:04 AM
Hope Marty never leaves town that way he can feel superior, because once he goes to Glen Rock, Franklin Lakes, Allendale, Ridgewood, etc etc etc he is Freddy Fair Lawn just like everyone else here
Marty Cone June 02, 2012 at 11:10 AM
@BB, I wont accept what these councils are doing. They moved it there based on the same reasoning. Drive through marvelous "Columbia Heights" or should I say North Paterson, not too picturesque. Not looking to leave Fair Lawn, just pointing out that the skate park is better on the outskirts of Fair Lawn because the low income folks seem to tolerate these things or just have to accept them because they do not have a choice. @Deleted, nice rambling , next time have a point other than the one on the top of your head,
Deleted because of harassment June 02, 2012 at 03:59 PM
I don't wear panties because I grew a third arm from living on the 'low income" side of town, where they build housing on hazardous waste sites. As for picking on Beemers - go to any parking lot and you can find the people I am refering to, the one's with that friendly and neighborly Marty (or is it Adolpho) attitude who buy things they can't drive because, well, they can, and comment about things while insulting other because, well, that's what passes for conversation in their "classy" minds. Marty - the real one - probably lives in a converted garage in his parent's yard, stealing his internet access off his neighbor's open router somewhere in one of those states where he was allowed to drop out of school in ninth grade. Now, what were the adults talking about?
Joe Kos September 03, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Hopefully the staue of limitations has passed. But look at these "criminals" trespassing and using the old skate park without helmets. Dont we have enough law suits on our hands? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFaZRozLlok&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Stuart Pace September 03, 2012 at 09:51 PM
perfect place to burn Reggie Ridgewood this year
Cynthia Smythe September 03, 2012 at 11:52 PM
Bonfires are so last century, the new thing is to burn down the whole playground.

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