East Lexington's Dam

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Should the East Lexington low-head dam be removed within 5 years?

Total votes: 40


Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 16 22:45

ProBono, I hope that you know I have the utmost respect for Chuck and his family. I do not know him personally, however, I have put myself in his shoes and cannot begin to imagine his pain.

I have, to the best of my ability, tried to show support to the Volpe family.
I intend to continue to be supportive of the Volpe family on this issue, no matter what anyone else thinks of me. No matter that I'm not the creme de la creme of Lexingtons elite. I'm a mother, a mother who takes every preventitive measure possible to try to keep her children safe.

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Joined: 2007 Sep 14 15:05

Postby livelearn101 » 2007 Sep 16 22:58

The point, Lexington Taxpayer , that has been repeated is that there were no signs of any nature concerning the dam.

No signs saying "No Trespassing on the Dam". That came after.
Everything to do with the dam that is now at that part came after Charles' death.

Not all people are informed on the dangers that hydraulics of a dam cause. Who is to say they were even jumping off of the dam that day? There are witnesses that they were not. Chief Crowder has stated that jumping off the dam that day would have been impossible due to the amount of water that was flowing over the dam.

I agree with "Pro Bono". No matter what the public's opinions are in this situation, the dam has been deemed a hazard and unsafe. Something is going to happen with it, it will not be left alone. At this point it does not matter whether you agree or disagree with it.

I also agree on the situation of personal attacks, name calling, etc. It has gotten out of hand (and this opinion is coming from a high schooler). Have some integrity and respect for others. It is no wonder that you do not put your name on this forum. I have a feeling many of you would lose a lot of respect from "prominent" members of Lexington for the harsh words you have used.

And, LexMom, I do not believe that dam safety information is something covered in 5th grade classes, but maybe it should be.
The area above the dam is a seemingly peaceful area to swim. For those who do not or did not know anything about the dangers of the dam, it was a perfect place to cool off on a spring or summer day.
Now, however, there are signs and warnings that express that the area is not safe.

Too bad those were not in place at an earlier time.

For those who are interested, Ben Goldsmith and I have received a grant for a Lowhead Dam Safety Project. We will be giving presentations soon about the dangers of lowhead dams and how you can protect yourself, your family, and your city from the dangers. I believe we'll be giving a presentation at W&L soon. I'll update with more information as soon as I get it, but if you are interested, feel free to email me.

With respect,
Cassie Benton cassiebenton@gmail.com


Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 16 23:07

I can only hope that my children grow to be as smart, caring and articulate as you are. You've made very good points, in a very calm matter and stuck to the subject at hand. I will definitely be watching for information on your presentations.

Pro Bono

Postby Pro Bono » 2007 Sep 17 00:10

The Dam will be dismantled , and hopefully a safe water recreation area/structure built. I don't see many of the names/handles on this forum posting any comments on the "After the Dam" Forum. There are some great, intelligent ideas.and exchange of ideas posted there. There is progress starting to be made at that forum. Positive posting's about the future of the park. Those of you that are interested in the future of your city come on over . PAX


Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 17 08:07

Maybe it was stated on the RioVista dam site and I didn't pay close enough attention. But, how long did it take to dismantle that dam there, and install the white water park?

Honestly, I think a park like this would do much, much more for the city. Lex. is big on tourism and I can imagine it would get tons of visitors.


Postby LexMom » 2007 Sep 17 08:38

Mr. Pro, I think this discussion had changed over from the dam issue to the lawsuit issue many comments back. The fact that it was on the local news channel and in our local paper makes it open for public opinion particularly on this forum where he chose to broadcast his side over and over. I happened upon this forum when I was searching for more information on the lawsuit and I could not bear to hear the consistent argument from Mr. Volpe about the dam, the dam, the dam. I can imagine it hurts him very badly to have to drive across the bridge and see the dam everyday as a constant reminder but Mr. Volpe wants to tear out a dam that is harmless unless you go near it, swim around it or like to jump from it to show off to your friends who think you are so cool.

HERE IS AN IDEA FOR THE DAM= leave it alone and it will leave you alone, stay the hell off it, stay the hell away from it, do not even allow swimming in that area anymore. It is a stupid idea to swim near a dam, as it might be dangerous. POST SIGNS YES but make them NO SWIMMING, NO CANOES, NO WATER ENTRY NEAR THE DAM. It has not been determined yet that the dam is coming out so I think the next discussion topic is premature. I care less about the dam than the issue of the lawsuit blaming our town for his son's death. The things I spoke of were not meant to be malicious but were serious questions we all have as he makes his public outcry. The city is responsible but he is not as a parent? He puts others in the place to have to say- Hey, your kid made a really, really bad decision and that is all. Nobody wants to have to say something like that to someone else but our citizens have been put in a position to look at it all very clearly and we know that those kids were dam diving regularly. Charles was a good boy, kind and intelligent but he was also a skateboarder, snowboarder, diver and fast driver. All of which are thrill seeking and he was very good at it all but he was too close to the dam that day. I would be interested to hear the deposition testimony of the canoe's and other swimmers that were in the water that day. How close did they come to the dam or did the currents pull them to the dam but they were able to escape it's clutches?

As for posting my name? My opinions may or may not reflect that of my husband and teenage daughter, who knew Charles, but the disclosure of my name would make mine become their problem when at work or school so I choose to use the privacy of this page to voice my view.


Higher Taxes to Pay for Useless Idea?

Postby LexMom » 2007 Sep 17 08:52

There he said it, raise the taxes to pay for it. Higher taxes so Mr. Volpe can get rid of the dam that he hates and put in a useless waterpark we do not need. That small area of our town cannot handle the crowds that a waterpark would bring and it destroys the serenity of our beautiful little park. After the dam? Has it been determined that the historical dam is coming out? No, it has not.

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Postby Stonewall » 2007 Sep 17 09:06

From time to time your humble Administrator looks in on the Rockbridge Forum to see how things are going. Here's my 2 cents:

Pro: Participation, passion, intelligence, and even some humor are on full display here, and appear to be growing nicely. Congratulations!

Con: A dissonant tone has appeared on this thread, prompting me to repeat a phrase in the Administrator's Welcome:
Be spirited but friendly, using logic and persuasion rather than insult and intimidation. Humor is a civilized tool and is encouraged, even when it is sometimes wry and sharp.
Remember that we succeed in a democracy by persuading most to a point of view, and cannot expect to persuade everybody. Life is fleeting, but hardheads are eternal. Even as we express our opinions fully and passionately, we respect the rights of others to hold differing, even wrongheaded, views.

Debate the idea, not the person.
Thanks for your posts! Stonewall, your administrator ... just an "empty suit."

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Postby needler » 2007 Sep 17 20:19

Raise taxes? WHERE, exactly, was that said in Chuck's post, LEXmom. Chuck actually said the San Marcos water park cost $1 million to build, but did NOT say taxes had to be raised.

:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: needler :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:


Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 17 21:42

Wow, that's a whole lotta devils up there.
"Um, I'll take "needler's po'd" for 500.00 Alex!"


Postby LexMom » 2007 Sep 18 06:53


Joined: 19 Aug 2007
Posts: 22
Location: Lexington, VA
Posted: 2007.09.13 12:27 Post subject: I don't think so
An engineer from Colorado will come and look at the area and make recommendations. He designed the one in TX. They can design swimming areas, and rapid areas, all safe. None would hold back aquatic life and all would allow upriver spawning. There is the large rock area on the north side, but once the dam was gone there wouldn't be anymore hydraulic pressure. So the river would essentially go back to it's native state.
There are many options. Cost factors would be much less than TX because it would be less to do. And it would cost far less than repairing the dam.
The design would take water flow into consideration.
It is my understanding from the very nice City Manager in San Marcos that they spent $1M. Their tax revenues have gone up and they run a tubing concession there, all of which help pay for it.


Postby resigned » 2007 Sep 18 06:57

I believe that the new courthouse will drive up our taxes and wonder what the rezoning is going to do in regards to our taxes. Often people in the North think its cheaper living than there but I tell them no so. We have taxes just like they do. Course then I worry if we get universal health care coverage what will happen to the taxes then.

There are two things certain in life, death and taxes.


Postby callyinva » 2007 Sep 18 07:48

Good gosh a mighty! I've been gone a few weeks, didn't expect to come back home to this.

I've tried to play catch up reading all the post. Ithin everything has been pretty much said.

But I must say Lex/mom, you post one of Mr. Volpe's post trying to prove your point to Needler that Chuck said the taxes would go up. LOL,
maybe you should try again.

He said "Their tax revenues have gone up " which I could argue does not necessarily mean that the taxes went up. It could mean the revenue (money coming in ) has increased due to more people moving in to the area. New businesses opening, new Industries paying taxes.

As far as the park, I see both sides of it. It might be a nice thing. On the other hand besides parking problems to address. Rio-Vista's project had a reconstruction price of 2.4 million. With us having a courthouse setting in the middle of town that we can't afford to do anything with. I can't see us being able to do a reconstruction on Jordons Point. I am open minded and can argue either side of it.

One thing is for sure some of you are acting like he suggested they build a full scale waterworld. Maybe I am wrong but perhaps Mr. Volpe was just offering suggestions. As, long as the dam comes down I wouldn't give as someone put it a (rats a$$) if anything went in.

Jeeze debate one thing at a time will ya, I'm getting a headache.



Postby ChuckVolpe » 2007 Sep 19 12:15

LexMom - We will nominate you the Tax Queen of Lexington. As pointed out Tax Revenue is income. Here are some other facts that you need to know. There are funds available from the Federal Govt for Dam Removal. Also from the State if the Dam is deeded dangerous. I hesitate to give you the codes at this time so you don't go harrassing the State Inspector. There are also funds available in the way of Grants both Federal and from the State for the water park, which isn't as large as your mind makes it. It would be one or maybe two kayak/canoe runs which would be created artificially. These would open up fish passage and we could get money for that. There would be very little need for funds from the City/County - And the County would be a partner in this as they own the river. The City as you know own the Dam and the Park. More people would come to the park which at this time gets very little activity. The new plan for the park increases parking, increases the size of the boat launch and moves in the the safe end of the island. The launch is already built and the new road is in. We would see more people enjoying the river and I would try to get the City to revisit the river walk project to connect the park to the Chessie Trail by raising the additional funds they need to complete that project. It would truely be beautiful. It's time to be proud of that park instead of hating it because of the dam. I don't hate it. You shouldn't. Let's embrace it and do something positive here. Or we could open a few more gift shops??


Postby Robyn » 2007 Sep 19 14:39

dam is a very bad word and you should not say bad words or Keith will not speak to you for 4 days.

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Postby needler » 2007 Sep 19 19:02

Bet you all will be thrilled to hear this, but I really am speechless. I can converse fairly sensibly with my granddaughter, my best friend, and even my mother, but I CONFESS Robyn has struck me dumb. The ONLY response I can think of for ANY of her posts is "er........WHAT?" Is it just me or is something missing here? While a forum for grins is welcome and much appreciated, this isn't one of 'em. I can't think of anything fun about this forum, so maybe Robyn's funny posts would be appropriate in another place.

Back to the MANY devils.......I miss 'em, and you all expect 'em from me anyway.

:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: needler :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:


Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 19 21:54

Um, needler, have you taken a gander at Sweetness n Light's posts yet?



Postby Anonymoose » 2007 Sep 19 22:19

Oh good gawd, what did I miss?!!

I love the idea of the "safe" water project, but don't see how we could claim anything involving water as safe. Water is by its nature unsafe. I can't see Lexington taking the risk. And, anything that involves "cooperation" amongst the localities is a long shot. If not, we would already be building bike trails and hiking trails to encourage people to enjoy our beautiful surroundings. I hate to play D.A. (devil's advocate), but if everyone's worried about paying for that courthouse, how are you going to get support for a non-necessity? Jordan's Point could be made a destination, but only if we start to see possibilities in projects that don't involve history and dead generals. Don't get me wrong, I love history, but at some point you have to plan for the future, or even the present, for that matter.

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Joined: 2007 Aug 20 11:01

Oh, boy!!!

Postby needler » 2007 Sep 19 23:08

I just did, harleygirl, and you're right...I NEVER should have opened my mouth! I thought I had a grasp on the language, but obviously NOT. While Wise One has welcomed posts from all by creating this forum, I'm not sure posts that are completely unintelligible are exactly what he meant. Perhaps Wise One will clarify his intent?? 'Cause if he meant ANY posts in ANY language, I would bet we ALL have a friend who speaks a language other than English, and with a little wheedling and a touch of bribery........now THAT might be fun, anyway......a conversation in seven languages.

Apologies, though, for the digression; I'm off topic and that's not nice.

BTW, welcome back Anonymoose; you really DID miss the fireworks. I fear you are absolutely right: since we can't even agree on whether it's day or night, how the hell would we EVER agree on a water park? Perhaps just getting rid of the damn dam is enough. I, personally, won't miss it one damn bit!

:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil: needler :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:


Postby LexMom » 2007 Sep 20 01:11

It is so nice to hear a voice of reason !