By Phil Orlandella
Boston Parks and Recreation Department held the first of several meetings last week at the Nazzaro Community Center to solicit suggestions for a $4.5 million renovation of several parks, a playground, bocce courts, basketball court, flooding, access to lighting, relocation, new grass, artificial grass, batting cage, electrical outlets and additional storage space along the area of Commercial Street between the skating rink and the pools.
Commonly known as Langone Field and Puopolo Park, there were discussions on possible Harbor flooding and making use of less used open space in the area near the rink. Bolted down furniture and games were a possibility for these areas.
The public meeting drew many residents including Representative Aaron Michlewitz and North End Athletic Association (NEAA) members that coordinate most of the activities in the parks including soccer, Little League, Minor League, Clinic and Traveling Baseball programs for all ages.
Rep. Michlewitz thanked the Mayor for “producing the funds” and he told residents “this is a great opportunity to renovate this area up to standards”.
NEAA Baseball Coordinator John Romano also recognize the Mayor for making the renovations possible. He also presented a list of the NEAA’s requests: Langone Park Baseball Field grass outfield with grass dirt in field.
Puopolo Park Baseball/Softball/Soccer Fields replacement turf field for multi-purpose use.
New layout at Puopolo Park to allow a bigger playing surface including but not limited to replacing home plate, expanding field into basketball court, expanding field toward bocce Court and bigger and better equipment storage space.
New lighting at Puopolo Park (LED) system, more electrical outlets, and toilet facilities.
One resident suggested an area for older children, and other interesting ideas were expressed.
The Boston Parks Department project team, Kathy Baker-Eclipse, Project Manager, Gene Belinger, Vice Presidents, Weston, Sampson and Brandon Kunkel, Project Manager, Weston, Sampson and Maria Lanza, City of Boston Neighborhood Services Department, Liaison were at the community meeting to discuss all the possibilities for the project which will most likely begin in 2019 and take close to nine months to complete.
The multi-million-dollar project will not impede traffic or take any parking spaces along Commercial Street according to the Parks Department.
All future community meetings will be announced by the City.