SCOTCH PLAINS — The township council on Tuesday gave its unanimous approval to a $300,000 bond ordinance to cover the cost of replacing the synthetic turf field at the soccer field behind the south-side firehouse.
The field — the only turf and only lighted public playing field in town — opened in September 2008 after several years of discussion between the council and the recreation commission. Development of the playing field, installation of the turf and lights and construction of the parking lot cost about $1.6 million back then.
At its special meeting on Monday, convened primarily to expedite the approval of the bond ordinance, Councilman Matthew Adams said township playing fields are facing what he called “a perfect storm” of increased multi-season demand for fields, more families with school-age children moving into town and the popularity of township sports programs.
Currently, some 1,900 players are enrolled in the soccer program, which runs year-round. Mr. Adams said he hopes approval of the bond ordinance will spur further conversations between the municipal government and sports leagues about township fields and ways to upgrade them and pay for them.