Home / Government / Mayor Steingold reiterates wish to build interactive fountain at the marina

Mayor Steingold reiterates wish to build interactive fountain at the marina

The fountain at the entrance to the Safety Harbor Marina.
Under Mayor Steingold’s plan, the fountain at the entrance to the Safety Harbor Marina would remain, while an interactive fountain would be installed down by the marina pier.

When Safety Harbor Mayor Andy Steingold first mentioned his desire to see an interactive fountain built along the city’s waterfront area during a goal-setting session in May 2015, some people scoffed at the idea.

Nearly 15 months later, Steingold made it clear his suggestion was not a joke.

The mayor reiterated his position of installing the fountain, which consist of a series of water jets spraying upwards from a ground-level concrete pad, at the marina during the City Commission meeting on Monday night, hoping to renew interest in his proposal as work on the city’s Waterfront Park heads into its next phase.

“I’d like to reiterate, I’d certainly like to see a water element as we move forward with developing the Waterfront Park,” Steingold said during his Commission Report at the conclusion of the meeting.

Safety Harbor Mayor Andy Steingold.
Safety Harbor Mayor Andy Steingold.

“I still think we need the interactive fountain and I’m gonna see if I can bring people down from the City of Safety Harbor and fill the audience and tell us that they want an interactive fountain down at the Waterfront Park.”

The mayor’s idea was initially met with skepticism by his fellow commissioners last year, as both Janet Hooper and Cliff Merz mentioned the cost and maintenance issues associated with water-based features.

“I get the concept, but anything that captures water has to have that water filtered or treated,” Merz said at the time.

“We could just build a spray tunnel, it would be a lot cheaper,” Commissioner Janet Hooper added.

After the meeting, Steingold expounded on his vision, noting he understand the concerns people have about adding such a feature.

“There are issues with a splash pad, and no one is going to agree to it because such attractions can be undesirable,” he told Safety Harbor Connect.

“But with an interactive fountain, people don’t jump into it. They ride or walk through it.”

An example of an interactive fountain, located in Port St. Lucie. Credit: Inside Florida.com
An example of an interactive fountain, located in Port St. Lucie. Credit: Inside Florida.com

Steingold said after initially suggesting the interactive fountain replace the current fountain at the entrance to the marina, he has since backed off that idea.

“I’ve heard most people say they don’t want to take out the natural fountain at the marina entrance, so this fountain would be further down the marina, near the bathrooms by the pier,” he said.

“It would be part of the Waterfront Park, but not part of that project.”

He said he would like the city to conduct a study to find out if they could implement his idea.

“We have to find out the costs, and conduct a study into the design,” the mayor said, adding such studies typically cost anywhere between $10,000 and $15,000. “But I am pushing for it because I think it’s a popular idea”

“I think it would be quite a popular amenity that would be appreciated by residents and visitors to our city.”

Harborites, what do you think? Would you like to see an interactive fountain at the marina? Let us know in the comments below.

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Note: The estimated cost of the study Mayor Steingold referred to was incorrectly reported earlier. The article has been changed to reflect the proper estimated cost.


  1. We need the fountain as a great entertainment activity to kids, parents, grandparents.
    Cost for the construction is worth it.
    It would bring value to our city.
    We need the fountain.

  2. I’m sure all the new visitors will be “wowed” by the derelict trailers on Main St on the way to the fountain.

  3. I like the idea. My concern lies with the city’s ability to handle intensive and costly maintenance. So much of our community is in need of maintenance/upgrades (e.g., missing sidewalks, damaged park facilities, trampled on landscaping, graffiti, and standing water on streets long after it rains) and there are two new parks and a boardwalk to keep up. Also, consider additional car parking/pavement on our scarce waterfront. Maybe another location and after completing more of our to-do list would most prudent.

  4. Absolutely, anything that will get our residents out enjoying our terrific parks and recreation areas is a hit in my book. And, as Cheryl said above, the one at the Lowry Park Zoo is always packed with kids. And the one along the Tampa Riverfront is also tremendously popular. I am really enthusiastic about the new Waterfront Park. It is a classy addition to the Marina area.

    • Yep, nothing like a fountain to put an end to bars and breweries. Why didn’t they think of that during prohibition. We’d still be a “dry” country!

      • I think E is referring to what sometimes seems like family night at places like Crooked Thumb. There are a whole lot of kids running around there some nights while their parents socialize. Not really a bad thing but a water feature would be a fun place to take the kids.

  5. I am sure children would love it & maybe a few adults too. I have watched the one at Lowry Park Zoo & it is 95% children playing in it. If that is ok, & it meets your objectives then the next thing to consider is the additional parking that will be needed. There are few spaces now. The cost of course needs to be thoroughly explored, put up for bids, & talking to other organizations who have one. Is the city covered with insurance if there is an injury? Are there other priorities that should be addressed first with this money? Is it something we tax payers need or just want for the fun of it?

  6. I think it’s a great idea that would benefit not only the residents of the city, but visitors as well. All ages can use it, but it’s a huge benefit to the young children of our city as there’s no where else to go that has a safe useable water feature to cool off.

    It would be a wonderful enhancement to our city – great suggestion Mayor!!!

  7. I like the idea and think it would make the marina and waterfront park an even more popular place for kids and runners. I agree Andy’s approach of studying the idea, and wouldn’t be for or against it until we know the cost and the overall financial status of the city.

  8. I think an interactive fountain at the marina would be a unique way to set Safety Harbor’s waterfront apart from other localities. I’m in support of Mayor Steingold’s idea.

  9. I think it’s a idea that should certainly be explored. The cost seems low compared to the many people who would enjoy it. Walking to the Marina is a pastime enjoyed by young and old, an additional fountain puts icing on the cake.

  10. I confess..I don’t live here anymore. But I did live here 40 + years and always think of Safety Harbor as home., so forgive my opinion., but if the City could come up with the financing of the fountain , I think it would be wonderful. Such a progressive idea.. And quite popular in progressive Cities like Georgetown.. A runners dream!

  11. As a Runner, I think it’s an AWESOME idea! What a wonderful way for runners, bikers, walkers, kids, dogs, etc. to cool off while out enjoying the Harbor, the Pier, and the Waterfront Park. It also promotes comradery among Harborites with one another; and, it’s a very welcoming symbol to our Visitors. I am all for it.

  12. I was not aware the city has all this extra money to spend on items like this. I guess every other need has been filled, all the employees got raises and everything is 100% through out the city.

    • Yup! Don’t want any nice things at all. Why do things to make our city more fun and attractive to guests and residents? Who needs amenities? I’ll bet our SH businesses hate fun things that cause people to come to our city. While you’re at it why not develop a proposal to get rid of that expensive pier and park? Parks? Why are we spending money on parks? And just what are we spending on that Baranoff oak tree? Cut it down, it’s too expensive to maintain until everything else is funded for 100 years. Now if you’ll excuse me there are some kids on the grass who need to be yelled at.

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