Keep Boundary Creek Park Design/Purpose Intact

0 have signed. Let’s get to 500!


Maple Grove City Council/Parks and Recreation board has recently put a project on hold that was previously approved that would implement a high-end artificial turf sports field which would replace the current soccer/football/lacrosse field in Boundary Creek neighborhood park. The focus of the project is to provide a “quality facility” for the sport of cricket, and the simple fact that this will be something new and exciting to the Maple Grove community, as well as neighboring communities, will undoubtedly bring with it growth. This field is not intended for pickup cricket games or beginner coaching of youth in the community as these types of activities can be done currently at any local park field in Maple grove, but rather intended for high-intensity games and/or tournaments for the associated cricket league/s in Minnesota.

Due to several Boundary Creek residents voicing their opposition, this project has been put on hold for the council members to take a closer look at details of the plan to ensure they agree that a neighborhood park such as Boundary Creek is in fact the best location and proper use of taxpayer money. To be clear, the current hold does not mean that the plan will not eventually be executed as originally planned.

Many residents have voiced their concerns about the impact this type of change will have to the neighborhood park of Boundary Creek. These concerns include, but are not limited to: street parking, tree removal, safety concerns for young children and the elderly due to increased traffic, amount of time that would be allowed to be dedicated to the current youth activities that occur at this field and the ability to use the field’s space for a number of other common neighborhood uses such as; pick-up games, kite flying and hobbies like model rockets to name a few.

The main concern I have with this type of field being implemented in a neighborhood park, such as Boundary Creek, is the inability of a neighborhood park’s infrastructure in regards to existing space for future expansion of more fields to be able to support the growth that a high-end sports field will undoubtedly bring with it. As stated previously, and as the goal of any sports league is to naturally grow, the fact that the intention of this plan is to develop a high-end cricket field in Maple Grove will initially attract many people since there will be nothing like it in the surrounding area, as well as continue to attract more and more people over time. I believe the park board needs to re-evaluate the impact to the community and determine a more suitable location; not just considering the next year but the impacts 5, 10, 20 years in the future. The current locations of a few of the places the adult cricket leagues of Minnesota currently use are Bohanon Park, Bryn Mawr Meadows, Lakeland Park and Fair Oaks. In comparison to a neighborhood park such as Boundary Creek, these are much larger parks that are not centered in low-medium density areas with residential single-family homes and are better equipped to handle the demand that this type of sports field/facility will have.

For those unfamiliar with Boundary Creek park, imagine the neighborhood park closest to your home with a playground and a ball field or two, and think if it would make long-term sense to install this type of artificial field/facility there. I don’t believe it is unfair to say that a sensible person would agree this is not the right location for this type of project long-term.

This petition is NOT intended to ban cricket from Maple Grove, rather to keep Boundary Creek neighborhood park, and any other Maple Grove neighborhood park, for the low-intensity uses they are designed for and ask that the Maple Grove City Council/Parks and Recreation board find a more suitable location for this type of new and exciting opportunity that will allow for proper growth and awareness in an area that this sport will be relatively new for.

 Lastly, if the city truly wants to be “supporting new trends in recreational activities” and “provide current players with a quality facility to participate in their chosen sport,” this project to implement a high-intensity artificial field cricket league/s (not Maple Grove Rec leagues) in Minnesota needs to be given further thought and consideration so a more suitable location can be determined for the long-term.

 

References

Evenson, Jeff. "City of Maple Grove Parks & Recreational Board." Letter to Friends of Boundary Creek Park. 29 May 2019.