Antioch veterans furious over construction of bathroom next to memorial

Veterans in Antioch are threatening to boycott city events over a bathroom project.

The public restroom is being built just a few feet from a veterans memorial, and they're battling to stop it.

Construction has ben paused for now, but the project remains surrounded by fencing and dirt. Veterans want it stopped for good.

"It's horrible, I visualize it sitting there and it takes everything away from our memorial," one veteran told KTVU.

"It was supposed to be grass and that's what they were telling us."

The public restroom is only about ten feet from the granite monument.

"...we said wait a minute, what's going on? Oh that's not going to be a bathroom, no, that's not what you told us," said Denny Hollison of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Antioch Post.

Veterans complained the bathroom is inappropriate and disrespectful. They insist the bathroom ruins the tranquil atmosphere.

"We're talking about not even participating in their Memorial Day or any of their activities."

Antioch's Mayor, Sean Wright, says the restroom was piped in 2009, before the memorial was here, but only recently has money come to finish building it.

Marina facilities are locked, and are only open for tenants. Existing public restrooms are dilapidated and very small.

Veterans worry that filth and vandalism will ruin the monument.

Wright says the restroom can't be moved any closer to the water because it would be in a flood plain.

He's hoping the city can spruce up a nearby roundabout and move the memorial there.

"We'll sit down with the veterans community, and we'll talk about what it is, see if we can do something and if we can't find something that works. I'm ready to say 'no bathroom,'" said Wright.

Veterans plan to crowd the next city council meeting to voice their concerns.

The meeting is ste for August 13. Plans will be aired for the location and the one across the street.

Adding a memorial wall and benches might make a move easier to accept.