The former private Forest Acres Pool & Tennis Club has sustained "a tremendous amount of vandalism" since the Amherst Town Board approved its purchase for $387,000 in May, Supervisor Jack Sharpe said Monday night.

But Councilman Gordon J. Kuzon, the board's recreation chief, assured people attending a Town Board hearing that officials are "committed" to making sure the town's newest recreation center and park opens for the 1989 season.

The comments came at a hearing on Amherst's proposed 1989-1994 capital improvements program, which includes $500,000 next year and $250,000 in 1990 for Forest Acres.

Sharpe also said swimming pools at the 7-acre site off North Forest Road near Main Street don't meet county Health Department standards and that officials have not decided how to deal with that situation.

Rest rooms, the cabana, the kitchen and the snack bar have been vandalized and the main pool used for skateboarding, he said. And the vandals have been "sawing locks and using bolt cutters, not simply climbing fences," Sharpe said.

Sharpe and Kuzon assured two speakers from the adjoining Amherst Senior Center that parking-lot improvements at Forest Acres will be made in concert with a $600,000 expansion at the center next year.

The added parking at Forest Acres is needed to serve the 50 percent expansion at the senior citizens center.

Councilman Lawrence Southwick Jr., chairman of the Capital Improvements Program Committee, said the cost in 1989 of the six-year capital spending plan is about $18 million. The plan is updated annually and incorporated in the budget the Town Board adopts each November.

The 1989-94 spending plan is dominated by "infrastructure" needs -- sewage and storm-sewer facilities, roads and water lines.

In a last-minute move Monday afternoon, the Town Board added $5 million to start work on a major Eggertsville storm-sewer project if such a project becomes possible in 1989.

Among the larger projects not in the infrastructure category are $650,000 next year and $750,000 in 1990 to expand the nine-hole Oakwood Golf Course; $458,980 for the second phase of the Amherst Canal Bikeway project; $485,900 for the aviation and space museum project and $240,000 for soccer fields on North French Road.

Looking at the future, the plan in 1993 shows $1.3 million for a library and $350,000 for a youth center in the Ransom Oaks planned community in northeastern Amherst. A $4 million Klein Road sewer rehabilitation project is scheduled from 1990 through 1992.

The capital improvements program also proposes spending:

A total of $1.25 million in 1989 funds to start up the sludge-incineration facilities at the town's Tonawanda Creek Road sewage treatment plant and to increase the plant's treatment capacity from 24 million to 42 million gallons per day.

$1,175,000 on sanitary-sewer repairs, maintenance and evaluation work and $1 million over two years on construction of a sanitary sewer for the last phase of the Youngs Road extension north of Dodge Road.

$2.5 million over two years on the new Sheridan Drive storm sewer and $1.35 million over six years for other storm-drainage improvements.

$2.15 million over two years to extend Youngs Road north of Dodge, $500,000 next year and $1 million in 1991 for a connector road between North French and Tonawanda Creek roads and $4.8 million over six years for materials to rebuild town roads.

$2.35 million over six years for water line replacement projects and $300,000 next year for such a project on North Forest Road.

Click here to see the comments. Add yours now!