Bordentown Township Committee OKs Terry Field improvements

Terry Field, located on West Constitution Drive, Bordentown. Image Courtesy of Google Maps
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Terry Field, located on West Constitution Drive, Bordentown. Image Courtesy of Google Maps

Terry Field in Bordentown Township is anticipated to receive upgrades and improvements after municipal officials passed a resolution recently to approve the project.

The Bordentown Township Committee approved the resolution at a Sept. 23 meeting. The resolution accepted a proposal from Turek Consulting, LLC, for the planned enhancements to Terry Field, located on West Constitution Drive, Bordentown.

Bordentown Township Administrator Michael Theokas said that the resolution approved finalized design plans and complete renovation specs for the site, and that the project is anticipated to be completed in multiple phases.

Theokas explained that when several residents who live within proximity of the field brought some of their concerns with the location to the municipality, township officials worked to address the matter.

“Initially, the township was made aware of some potential safety issues on the ‘tot lot’ playground at the park. Those were immediately corrected and fixed by our public works staff,” Theokas said. “We subsequently met with some of the residents who live in the vicinity of the park, and our professionals and public works staff visited the park on several occasions to come up with concept plans.”

Once concept plans were in place and eventually approved by the township committee in September, the improvements and upgrades planned for Terry Field include a resurfacing of the current basketball court; a new “tot lot” playground; significant tree planting and other new vegetation throughout the entire park; a removal of the current on-site baseball field to be replaced with the aforementioned tree and vegetation plantings; a walking path through the park, flanked by new trees; several benches and picnic tables throughout the park; and new charcoal grills to be installed.

Theokas also explained that the new trees in particular are aimed to serve multiple purposes for the site. He said that the tree plantings are planned to create a “great new look and feel to the park” and to help relieve drainage in the area as well.

“We have dealt with storm water issues in that immediate area, and have taken multiple steps to help improve the drainage,” Theokas said. “The new trees will help with soaking up the storm water and reduce the run-off to the adjacent homes. Planting new trees also provides great environmental benefits.”

The township administrator further explained that the decision and actions taken by the municipality for Terry Field have played a role in an aim to enhance multiple parks and recreational sites throughout the area.

The committee passed a resolution at a June 24 meeting to approve engineering services for an expansion to Joseph Lawrence Park. Municipal officials also announced earlier this year that they plan to develop more recreational facilities at Northern Community Park and received a grant in Oct. 2018 to redevelop the former Dix Drive-In property.

The township acquired the Dix Drive-In property on Route 206 in 2018 and received funding from a Burlington County Open Space grant totaling $250,000. Municipal officials said the grant will be used to construct new recreational facilities and to upgrade existing recreational facilities. The facilities are planned for youth soccer, softball, baseball and field hockey.

Township officials said they met with representatives from several youth sports organizations regarding the upgrades that are needed to the township’s parks and recreational facilities. According to township officials, the long-term plans are to build a youth soccer facility at the Dix Drive-In property, with five soccer fields and recreation amenities.

In addition to the purchase of property for new facilities, the intended recreational amenities are planned to include additional softball fields, new dugouts, benches and other features for current grounds like Joseph Lawrence Park as well.

At Northern Community Park, township officials explained that they are working with Little League baseball and softball teams on a new batting cage, with the possibility of increasing and improving the current fields.

“Overall, the township has made improvements to our parks and recreation a priority,” Theokas said. “Terry Field, while one of the smaller parks, is the only one that members of the surrounding neighborhoods can access on foot. It’s intended for a more passive use, and gives the residents of the area an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and commune.”

Theokas said that the particular efforts and plans for Terry Field were credited to the collaboration with liaison to public works and township deputy mayor Eugene Fuzy, liaison to parks and recreation Ken Mason and township mayor Stephen Benowitz.