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New Central Park sports fields planned in Saugus

Lacking a budget for a recreation center, the city decide to construct two multiuse athletic fields

Posted: January 26, 2013 2:58 p.m.
Updated: January 26, 2013 3:00 p.m.

Garrett Machtolff, 17, of Saugus runs on the western portion of Central Park on Wednesday near an area eyed by the city for new sports fields. Signal photo by Jonathan Pobre

The city of Santa Clarita is working to bring a dream of two new fields at Central Park closer to reality, a city officials say.

But doing so means putting the eventual goal of a park recreation center on hold, said Rick Gould, director of the city’s Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department.

As it stands, there are about 10 acres of undeveloped land around the park. Gould said the original master plan for the park called for constructing a recreation center on land in the western portions of the park near the existing community gardens.

But due to budget constraints, the city decided to construct two multiuse athletic fields on the land instead. The design and plan for those fields was approved as part of the city’s budget in June.

During their meeting last week, members of the Santa Clarita City Council approved a $151,000 contract with RJM Design Group Inc. to design the sports fields.

However, Gould estimated the entire project could cost around $2 million.

“Building sports fields is not about throwing down grass seed and turning on your sprinklers,” Gould said. “There are some technical complexities that we need to deal with.”

Some of those complexities include drainage, lighting and grading.

Gould said the project has yet to be fully funded, meaning construction on the fields cannot begin. He estimated construction would take about a year after the project is funded.

The eventual plan is still to construct a recreation center on the land, Gould said. This means, if the plan holds, the city would need to either relocate the fields or construct new ones.
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