Should the Super Park be included with a library expansion, squeezed into Norcross Park or find a home in the vacant 25 Worcester St.?
The question was once again the subject of debate between the Board of Selectmen and the Super Park Study Committee. The committee has been backing the Worcester Street site, which Selectmen approved last summer, for a handicapped accessible replacement for the demolished park.
Selectman Brook Padgett suggested the new park might be a better sell if it was combined with general improvements to the Grafton Common area — increased parking, a Super Park and an expanded library.
“You want to give them bang for their buck,” he said. “You would have a bathroom, parking for the park.”
Members of the Super Park Study Committee wryly notes that would tie the success of the $300,000-$600,000 park to the library. The last library expansion proposal failed decisively at the polls after bitter debate over the project’s size, cost, need and the closure of branches in north and south Grafton.
Super Park Chairman Michael Scully said the costs for the project would increase for both the Perreault property and Norcross Park. Both pieces of land are relatively flat and would increase the need for ramps.
After Selectman John Carlson strongly advocated for Norcross Park on North Street, committee member George Prunier exploded with comments.
“I’m getting sick and tired of this,”
said Prunier, who originally launched the drive for the new park. “You want to jam it in there, you can jam it in. The park would be useless for what it’s used for now.”
Norcross is now the home of the “mini Fenway” Little League field, basketball courts, a small playground and an open field used for soccer practices. The park also has existing parking, which committee members noted are frequently used by Worcester Street residents.
Padgett floated an idea: what if the town sold Worcester Street to fund Super Park on Perreault? There is room for up to three houses, he said.
“Worcester Street is a lot easier to sell opposed to Perreault,” he said.
Selectman Peter Adams wondered if Planning Board would back a playground at Worcester Street — they opposed it for a fire station several years ago because of exit sight lines.
(I’m writing this on my iPhone how cool is that?)