To the Editor:
The current proposal to demolish the Maple Avenue School in order to build an athletic field on the Maple Avenue site is ill-advised at best. It attempts to shoehorn a 100 x 60 yard multipurpose athletic field with its 1,000 seat bleachers into the 10-acre Maple Avenue School site. The field’s retaining wall will encroach upon the current ballfields at one end and comes right up to Maple Avenue on the other.
The plan includes 64 onsite parking spaces and counts another 200 or so in-neighborhood spots. Can the neighborhood tolerate parking enough cars to fill the 1,000 seat stadium?
On the other hand, I’ve heard that Chester has trouble fielding various teams and draws kids from the lower grades to fill their rosters. With a regional trend of declining enrollment, does it make sense to build this field in addition to the Chester Commons field now used by the School?
The new Chester Academy has large tracts of undeveloped land on both its eastern and western flanks. If a large track or field needs to be build, these parcels would be a more appropriate location.
The school needs to develop a better plan to serve the community than this one.
Vote no on Feb. 25. Find a better way!