A front-page article in the August issue of The Rye Record enlightened readers about the pressing need for repairs and restoration of underlying infrastructure, including buildings, walls, and parking facilities at Rye Town Park; some of which might not be obvious because of the hard work of park staff and the important contributions of the Friends of Rye Town Park to the beauty of the park landscape by adding street furniture. As a founding member and past president of the Friends, I have long been aware of decades of deferred maintenance of the historic buildings, walls, and parking facilities. As any property owner knows, ignoring regular maintenance serves only to increase the costs as both damage and price increase as time passes, which is why having regular roofing, electrical, and plumbing repairs is crucial.
In the past several weeks, an opportunity has arisen to efficiently and economically remedy structural damage to the historic Bathhouse. During the course of window replacement, which can be commissioned with the help of professional window dealers, it was discovered that the exterior walls of that building were crumbling from years of water penetration. The Town of Rye has committed funds that will cover part of the repair cost. If the City of Rye contributes the relatively modest sum of $80,000, all the structural issues can be remedied before winter storms cause additional costly damage. A construction crew is already present so that the work could be done quickly, saving money over the long term, and preventing the closure of much-needed bathroom facilities in the park.
I urge the mayor and the city council of the City of Rye in partnership with the Town of Rye to fund these critically needed repairs as soon as possible.
– David J. Rasmussen