“The arrival and opening of The Floating Pool Lady is yet another historic milestone in the rebirth of the south Bronx waterfront,” Congressman Jose Serrano said in welcoming the newest cultural resource to the borough.
Serrano added that from the moment he heard of the Neptune Foundation, a not-for-profit dedicated to serving recreationally underserved communities with a movable waterfront pool, he campaigned for it’s journey to include a stop in the south Bronx.
Now docked off the waters of Barretto Point Park, where nearly 100 years ago previous elected officials anchored a floating bath, Serrano said it’s an honor to follow in the innovative steps of his governmental forefathers.
“While that wooden pool is long gone from our shoreline, the vision of children and families swimming right on our waterways still captures the imagination of New Yorkers,” he said.
The five-acre pool will not only recapture the borough’s historic highlights, but also will provide accessible summertime entertainment for Hunts Point and Longwood’s 47,000 residents.
“I thank you for your patience, sweat and determination,” Serrano said to his south Bronx constituents. “Your community district is one of the only spots in our city without a swimming pool of any kind. The floating pool will give you what you’ve been missing.”
Serrano added that while The Floating Pool Lady brings a unique, fun-filled event to the borough, more importantly it shows a great sense of accomplishment in the Bronx’ revitalization efforts.
“For years the south Bronx and its shoreline have been the place where New York City put things that it did not want,” he said. “We have fought for years against that mentality and finally, with all of our new parks and greenways, we’ve started to break the pattern.”
The congressman gave his special thanks to Ann Buttenwieser, founder of the Neptune Foundation, “whose vision and appreciation for New York’s maritime history propelled this project forward,” he said.
He also thanked the young people from The Point Community Development Corporation, for bringing the opportunity to host the pool to his attention and Councilwoman Maria del Carmen Arroyo, Community Board 2 and Rocking the Boat for all realizing what value the pool could bring.
Various city agencies were also instrumental in making The Floating Pool Lady’s Bronx existence a reality. In accordance to an agreement between the Neptune Foundation and the Department of Parks and Recreation, the pool will remain docked in the East River for the next three years.
“On behalf of the people of the south Bronx, I thank them all for their great work,” Serrano said. “Now I invite everyone who wants to cool off and swim to come down to Barretto Point and take a dip in The Floating Pool Lady. The water’s great!”