Fall TM could get Jordan Park renovation request

Aug 1, 2019 by

Published July 31, 2019


LYNNFIELD — Renovations to Jordan Park are being eyed for October Town Meeting.

In an interview with the Villager, Town Administrator Rob Dolan said the town is looking to have new engineering plans developed in order to make cost-effective improvements to Jordan Park.

“We are excited about the project,” said Dolan. “It will improve all aspects of the park including expanding the field, the playground and the parking lot. It will also create a safer traffic situation.”

Lynnfield Youth Soccer Club (LYSC) Fields Director Bruce Madden has been leading a subcommittee that is working with local officials on developing an agreement for the project. In an interview with the Villager, Madden said the LYSC is looking to donate to the project as part of a public-private partnership.

“The improvements to Jordan Park include increasing the size of the parking area and the size of the field so the playing area can be extended,” said Madden. “We are also looking to upgrade the irrigation system and replace the field’s fencing. It’s one of the last components of the fields project.”

LYSC President John Scenna agreed.

“We have a small committee working with the town administrator and DPW director on coming to terms on a partnership that will bring this project forward,” said Scenna. “As an organization, we are grateful to the town for this opportunity to improve the playing fields for the children of Lynnfield.”

During a recent meeting, Selectmen Chairman Phil Crawford said there are three components to the Jordan Park improvement project.

“The biggest piece is the parking lot needs to be expanded,” said Crawford. “In the original plan Gale Associates had done years ago, the parking lot would have been expanded to about 101 spaces. It currently has 37.”

Crawford also said a new playground will be built as part of the project.

“It would be smaller than the existing one,” said Crawford.

Crawford said the third component of the Jordan Park project entails renovating and expanding the field, which would allow two full-size playing fields to be built. He said the project would include additional improvements such as a new irrigation system and new fencing.

“The big piece we are going to ask Town Meeting for is to pay for the expansion of the parking lot,” said Crawford.

Selectman Chris Barrett inquired if the new fields will have artificial turf or grass.

“It’s going to stay as grass,” said Crawford. “They need to expand it about 20-yards out. There is still clay where the old baseball diamonds were, so water doesn’t drain properly there. That needs to be excavated.”

Townscape Lynnfield Co-President Rich Sjoberg said the nonprofit’s board will be discussing the project this fall.

“Townscape works toward improving parks and recreation areas in town with the funds that we raise at Geraniumfest and Kids’ Day,” said Sjoberg in an interview with the Villager. “Jordan Park is up next on our radar.”

Dolan said the town’s contribution to project would be funded by “one-time revenue sources” that can only be used for capital projects.

The Jordan Park project has been in the works for the past six years, as the Fields Committee recommended that the park get a major overhaul in 2013. A warrant article pertaining to the project was submitted by the selectmen for the 2017 Spring Town Meeting, but Article 26 did not move forward due to the project’s price tag. Fields Committee Chairman Arthur Bourque said at the time the estimated cost for the project was about $1.5 million.

“It was withdrawn because we determined the middle school track was a bigger priority,” said Bourque in an interview with the Villager. “This is the last project that needs to be done for youth sports.”

Crawford noted during an interview with the Villager that in order to develop plans for the project, engineering services need to be re-bid before October Town Meeting.

“We think that will bring us down to a level we can afford,” said Crawford.

Madden also noted the memorial erected in honor of Marine First Lieutenant Allan Jordan needs to be relocated as part of the project. Jordan, who the park is named after, was killed on Hill 700 during the Battle of Khe Sanh in the Vietnam War on April 6, 1968. Madden’s son, Jack, relocated the memorial as part of his Eagle Scout project last year.

“The memorial will be relocated to a prominent location in the park,” said Madden.

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