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Planning Board examines proposed soccer field

March 03, 2010
MOULTONBORO — Drainage and space were the main concerns in reviewing plans for the proposed soccer field at the Lion's Club property, plans town officials insist only include the field at this time.

The Planning Board held a public hearing on Wednesday under RSA 674:54, which gives the Planning Board and Board of Selectmen the option to hold a public hearing on the governmental use of land that constitutes a substantial change or new use to the land within 60 days of the planned start of construction.

The board reviewed a master plan for the property on Old Route 109, which includes the footprint of a building town officials have said is for planning purposes only.

Planning Board Chair Nat King said the hearing was to discuss the proposed plan and was not the venue for discussions on cost.

The first phase of the project, starting with grading, is anticipated to begin on April 1.

Town Administrator Carter Terenzini made a presentation on work planned for the Lion's Club property, emphasizing that the soccer field was only one phase around that property.

Other structures listed on the property included a community center building, a softball field, and others.

Planning had to be done for the whole site, and Terenzini said additional phases would come with form and function along with demand and support. Each phase would be subject to town meeting.

"I can't tell you absolutely if the rest will come into fruition," Terenzini said. "I have to drive that home: 'Maybe, if ever.'"

Terenzini said the first phase will be the grading plan for the site and construction of the soccer field.

Engineer Ray Korber of KVPartners said the gazebo will be relocated, and clearing on the north side of the soccer field will be done by a volunteer group. The area proposed for the ball field slopes from north to south and will be excavated to level the area.

Korber said the soccer field is elevated to help with drainage and add places for drainage swales. Culverts will also be in place around the property, and other drainage measures will be taken.

The field will have a parking area that Korber said will be able to handle cars coming in and out. There will also be a small, temporary access road to keep traffic from the soccer field separate from the Lion's Club.

Korber said a drainage report will be submitted to the town and a conceptual plan will be examined. Additionally, he said the field does fall within a 25 to 50 foot setback from the neighboring wetlands.

Korber said the position of the field was a tight fit on the property. Screening, such as a fence, could go up to separate the field from Route 109 and the neighboring Wallace property.

Terenzini said no restroom facilities were planned, though portable toilets would likely go on the site. There are also no plans to light the field.

Korber said there is no turnaround for busses, but the access road could be utilized.

King said Town Planner Dan Merhalski submitted a critique of the plan, which will go to the engineer for response.

Korber said abutter Bob Wallace has been talked to about possible impacts on his property.

"I have great concern about the whole thing flooding," Wallace said.

Board member Ed Charest said the Heritage Commission expressed concern about potential degradation of the property, as it was one of the first areas of Moultonboro ever settled.

Board member Eric Taussig asked if consideration had been given to moving the soccer field on the other side of the property where the plan showed a softball field. Terenzini said designers tried to look at the end product and did not look at the possibility of moving the field.

Discussion will continue for the proposed project at the Planning Board's next meeting on March 10 at 7:30 p.m. There will be opportunity for public comment at that meeting.

Martin Lord Osman
Littleton Chmber
Varney Smith
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