MIDDLESEX TWP — The ball is in the engineer's court when it comes to a proposed Middlesex Township Sports Complex.
Kevin Lynch of project developer JTSA presented updated blueprints for the multisport complex to be constructed behind the township building to supervisors earlier this month.
The plans were redrawn to provide cost-effective engineering “so we don't blow the township out of the water with (the) construction budget for no reason,” Lynch said.
Specifically, the plans include grading revisions to allow for “tiered” sports fields. The elevation difference between upper and lower turf fields would be about 6 feet. An additional natural-grass field approximately 230 feet by 90 feet is included in the new design.
“There will still be a full-perimeter walkway,” Lynch said. “As well as walkways leading into each of the fields.”
Lynch said about 29,000 cubic yards of earth need to be moved. A parking lot, storage building, concessions stand and perimeter fencing are included in the plan.
There is no cost estimate yet for the project.
Supervisor Chairman Mike Spreng said there are plans for field lights to make the complex accessible any time of the day.
Supervisors began considering a new sports complex after being approached by local sports clubs over a month ago.
According to township officials, several groups — such as Mars Area School District youth soccer and lacrosse — said they would be interested in helping with the cost.
“(The organizations) have indicated the desire to both contribute to the upfront cost as well as sign leases to continue to use the field,” said Michael Hnath, township solicitor, “to help pay some of the debt.”
The complex would replace softball and baseball fields, tennis and basketball courts, and a playground.
Residents suggested the community may miss these things. Joe Wharton said the playground would be especially missed by parents who have kids competing on the fields.
“If you want it to be a township park … it would be nice to have a playground for little ones to play on,” Wharton said.
Supervisors recognized the design does have some free space to make future additions.
Spreng reminded the public the complex would in part by funded by sports groups, giving them seniority when it comes to field use. Making the complex accessible to all residents on a daily basis is being discussed.