EASTCHESTER, N.Y. – Eastchester voters made their decision on Thursday, and have overwhelmingly chosen to support the school district’s near $2 million bond to replace the synthetic turf field.
The outcome was never in doubt, as 1,075 voters easily ratified the bond, 743-322. The current field was forced to close earlier this year when exposed seams and worn surfaces created safety concerns.
In addition to the turf replacement, the bond will also fund masonry repointing – removing deteriorated brick and installing new mortar to increase a structure’s longevity – a track resurfacing, and the installation of a perimeter fence and security cameras.
The field, track, cameras and fence comprise $1.05 million of the bond, while the repointing work will cost approximately $850,000. According to the district, officials opted for a turf field over natural grass due to the field’s constant usage and because the foundation is already in place for a synthetic surface.
With the bond having passed, the cost to taxpayers for an average home assessed at $10,000 will be $29.90 per year over 15 years.
The field is used daily by 800 middle and high school physical education classes and recess. After school, it is used by modified, JV and varsity teams for practices and games. It is also used on the weekends by 2,200 participants in town leagues, and in the summer months, when school is not in session, it is used by the town summer camp program.
Typically, synthetic fields similar to the one that was installed at the Eastchester High School in 2002, last between eight and 10 years.
“It makes more sense for us, with the footprint of a synthetic field already in place, to continue with that,” Superintendent Walter Moran said. “Most districts in the area use turf, it can withstand the constant use better. A grass field would need to be taken out of rotation, rested and repaired. It’d make it quite difficult for us given the amount of use.”