City seeks public input for regional park plan 

As city officials prepare to transform the old Hargett Farm on Butterfly Lane into Westside Regional Park, they’re seeking public input for the final time.

In the first of three meetings scheduled for this week, Roelkey Myers, the city’s deputy director of parks and recreation, presented the tentative park master plan and opened the floor for questions, concerns and comments.

“We know what we can supply and what we have shortages of. There have been a ton of considerations put in to date,” Myers said. “These last meetings are the finishing touches, one last chance for the public to weigh in.”

Myers said they will finalize the master plans following the meetings and present it to the mayor and Board of Alderman for approval. The project is expected to cost $51.3 million and would include an aquatic center and outdoor water park, 12 multipurpose fields, miles of walking paths, and an adventure park, Myers said.

About 10 people showed up Sunday afternoon at the Hill Street Park pavilion for the first meeting.

Much of the conversation Sunday surrounded the fields, as local residents expressed concerns about the choice of only multipurpose fields and drainage.

Mike Kline, president of Frederick National Little League, said the baseball community in Frederick is in need of more strategically placed baseball diamonds.

“People are asking for us to host tournaments, and the fields aren’t close together,” he said.

Myers said they understand the need for diamonds in close proximity. Multipurpose fields could facilitate soccer, football, rugby, lacrosse, field hockey and more, with each sport’s required lines drawn in a different color paint, and are in higher demand, he said.

Aldermen Donna Kuzemchak and Michael O’Connor also attended the meeting, and Kuzemchak pointed out that many sports have seen a surge in popularity.

“I have nothing against baseball, but when we’re spending this kind of money, we want to get the most bang out of our buck,” Myers said.

Dave Satterfield, of Frederick, said he gives the plan a “thumbs up,” though he urged officials to consider how drainage would affect the new fields. Other existing fields off Butterfly Lane cause stormwater to run off into a ditch, he said, a failure of the design.

“You’re going to have to fix that,” he said. “Putting more fields in isn’t going to fix it.”

Myers said he hoped more people would show up, but there are more opportunities for the public to offer suggestions. If the lack of baseball facilities continues to come up, they may alter the master plan to include those.

The meetings were purposely scheduled to appeal to a wide range of people, he said.

“With stuff like this, you just never know,” Myers said. 

Follow Laura Blasey on Twitter: @lblasey.

(17) comments

elymus43

It looks like Frederick wants to be a FUN CITY. After a while it will be all parks and bike trails????????

bebe876

We are the only big city that doesn't have a water park.. Like we need more sports fields... so dumb.

daylight01

How about selling it to a home builder and paying the bonds used to buy it!!

emuumuumuu

Another congested, cookie cutter housing development is the LAST thing Frederick needs.

Comment deleted.
stevem90999

Arcticdc5.....[thumbup]

stevem90999

They want input, i'll give them input. We got enough tax draining parks as it is, we don't need no more. Just a place for midnight drug and weapon transactions to take place at the public's tax expense.

Comment deleted.
whoville2

Spot on, Arctic.

Fredmd21704

how about we just not build anything here, park or otherwise!

dbjanda1

Are all the recreational parks in the city/county at overcapacity ???...Same thing with hotels !!!...The government should spend according to its needs and neither are NEEDED...Me

Newthinking7

Not all parks or spaces are simply parks in nature. You also use the open space as buffer to stop the high denisty ramifications like, crime, poverty, and trash buildup which hurts the entire area.
Many times open spaces do not get used that muh but we have seen a profit from not haveing to add extra police, monitouring, maintence of area. Think less of a spot and more of a circle.

quemzeee2

Great news, We never would have bought in Hillcrest area had we not been told this was in the "works" .

Newthinking7

In developing Carrol Creek, then E Street Rising, then the wall mart on rte 40 and Harget regional park, Frederick city wil be in a premire postion for revenue.
The New York post has always reffered to Frederick city [ not the county] as the Cinderella city of the Eastern U.S.
This is a briliant oportunity to solidify this city and preseve or protect it from long term degredation.
The advent of this property will not only enhance your area but it will also protect it from the ravages of time that we have seen in other cities and counties in the East.
This is long term planning, and it works.

garden whimsey

I notice you refer to "your area" which leads me to believe you are not a city resident and, therefore, not shouldering the costs of these projects. Homeowners in the city of Frederick are highly taxed and the money goes to junk like the cement ditch that runs through downtown and another (unneeded) park. The only people who should have a say in how city taxes are spent are city residents and taxpayers. If you live outside the city limits, don't tell us how to spend our money. SELL THE HARGETT PROPERTY!

garden whimsey

Sell the property. It is a tax burden. Even if they charge fees for using the fields, it is not going to bring in enough revenue to support itself. There must be huge insurance liability for injuries and there is the cost of constant upkeep. Sell it. It should never have been purchased in the first place. SELL IT!

public-redux

Sidewalks never bring in enough revenue to pay for themselves either. Not to mention the cost of upkeep. Sell 'em.

emuumuumuu

I take it you think Frederick should just be one large congested mess of high density housing developments and pavement, then?

robberttjohnson

A stadium and sports fields aren't anyone's idea of a "park", so don't label it a park.

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