The Brookline Park and Recreation Commission is considering installing synthetic turf at Cypress Field.
The field is on the town’s books for renovation as part of the upcoming capital improvement plan.
According to Parks and Open Space Director Erin Gallentine, most fields in Brookline are renovated at 20-year intervals and Cypress Field has been on the town’s upcoming capital improvement plan.
The renovation is set to be coordinated with the high school expansion and renovation, Gallentine said, but the commission first wants to evaluate whether the field should be switched from natural grass to synthetic turf.
Brookline currently has three synthetic turf fields at Harry Downes Field, Skyline Park and Soule Recreation Center. Devotion School will also have a synthetic turf when construction on the school is completed.
Overuse and compaction of Brookline’s athletic fields means the fields do not have much time to recover. Synthetic turf can be a good option for Brookline fields as it is more durable than natural grass, has better drainage, and can be open for a longer season, according to Gallentine.
Given Cypress Field’s location directly across Greenough Street from the high school, the field is highly used by students and athletic teams.
“It would be better able to support their program needs,” Gallentine said of a synthetic turf field.
According to Gallentine, the commission has heard feedback from the community both in support of synthetic turf and against it. Some have raised questions about the impacts associated with climate change.
The commission is holding a meeting on September 12, 2017 to discuss the renovation with residents. The focus of the meeting will be on the question of whether or not to install synthetic turf at Cypress Field and to gather community input on the project.
According to Gallentine, the commission is expected to make a final decision in November.