Recreation field construction underway; should see action next fall
By Janice Steinhagen - Staff Writer
Griswold - posted Tue., Aug. 23, 2011
Game and practice facilities for Griswold recreation leagues are beginning to take shape at 211 Sheldon Road, but the fields won’t see any play until next year.
“We anticipate the field being ready for play for next fall,” said Sheldon Road Field Committee member John Faulise. “We’d like the field to get one growing season in, at least, before it starts to be used.”
Faulise said that construction will continue this fall with seeding of the fields and installation of an irrigation system. The seven-member committee is currently applying for permits to begin construction of a building to house a concession stand and restrooms.
So far, the 5.5-acre site has received all the fill material it will need and the topsoil has been screened, Faulise said. The leach field and a septic system have been installed, as has the framework for the future scoreboard. The upper part of the parking area, adjacent to Sheldon Road, has also been paved.
The fields are intended to host football, soccer and other teams for both practice and play. The town first approved construction of the project in 2009 on property it received from the state Department of Environmental Protection through the efforts of Griswold selectmen and state Rep. Steve Mikutel (D-45th District).
“The price tag [for the project] would be in excess of $400,000,” said Faulise. “We’re working within a budget with grants and donations of $150,000. We’ve had a lot of local support from a lot of local businesses and contractors.”
American Industries, a Griswold construction, gravel and asphalt company, has been among the major donors and “deserves a lot of thanks for where we are [on the construction schedule],” Faulise said. He said that the company has been doing site work when they have crew available for the town project.
Faulise’s own landscaping and civil engineering business, Boundaries, donated the design work on the project. And the scoreboard, currently stored at the town garage, was donated by Jewett City Savings Bank, “to the tune of $15,000,” he said.
Construction of the field has been a true community effort, said Faulise. “There’s a long list of contributors. If I tried to name them all, I’d probably leave somebody out,” he said.
In addition, fundraisers like a recent wine-tasting have helped fill the project’s coffers, and other events are planned for future months in conjunction with the town’s recreation department. When the fields are competed, Faulise said, they will be turned over to the Griswold Recreation Department, which will govern scheduling and use of the fields.
Faulise said that his committee has been working with the recreation department to promote the project and sign up donors. “We’re still looking for additional donations of fencing and other assorted site improvements,” he said.