Friday, March 24, 2006
Selectmen review Banta-Davis recreation plans
The Recreation Commission (RecCom) plans for developing additional recreational facilities on the Banta-Davis Land off Bedford Road were reviewed at the Board of Selectmen's meeting on March 14. The plan calls for the construction of one multi-purpose field, two Little League fields and four tennis courts. The site presently contains one baseball field, one softball field, and one multi-purpose field with surrounding running track.
Engineer Dale Harris (of Dewbury Goodkind) presented the proposed Phase 2 site plan and engineering detail. He stated that, at "full build-out," calculations indicate a need for 160 parking spaces and that the plan shows 200 spaces. Spalding can provide satellite parking, although the path between Spalding and Banta-Davis is not passable at this time. When the Selectmen questioned prospects for use of the path, RecCom member Cindy Nock stated that a cost estimate will be developed as part of the present project but that actual rebuilding of the trail is not included. The path is problematic in that a fair amount of wetland is involved.
Alan Carpenito, candidate for Selectman, expressed concern for the amount of money proposed for new ball fields on Banta-Davis. "We (the Town) bought the Foss Farm in 1971....It was farm land and could be developed into ball fields at minimal cost to the taxpayer." It has been estimated that the Phase 2 project may cost $1 million.
Noting the growing popularity of Pop Warner football in the region, Selectman Tony Allison questioned the lack of a football field and the preponderance of baseball fields in the plan. "I would feel more comfortable if we saw hard data on need [for baseball]." He offered a further suggestion: "Could something for the older members of our community be squeezed into the plan — perhaps a bocce ball court?"
The public hearing and site plan review will be continued to March 28 at 7:30 p.m. when the Selectmen expect to have received comments from other boards.
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