Board Lists Top Nine Town Recreation Sites In Need Of Attention

The Barnstable Recreation Commission yesterday voted 5-0 to back a plan that identifies the top nine town recreational properties and facilities for improvement and investment.

Heading the list was the Craigville Beach House in Centerville.

The report states that the entire Craigville Beach site, and the beach house in particular, need attention.

Then, in descending order, the plan backs improvements at Lombard Field in West Barnstable; the Osterville Bay fields, playground and tennis courts; the Skate Park in Hyannis; Lopes Field in Hyannis; the former Marstons Mills Elementary School property, where a multi-use facility for Little League and partial demolition of the existing school building is envisioned; the Veterans Beach playground in Hyannis; the Barnstable-West Barnstable tennis courts in West Barnstable; and the tennis courts in Cotuit.

The commission plans to apply for Community Preservation Act funding to finance the proposed improvements.

At the request of Town Manager Thomas K. Lynch, the commission decided to form a “Road Trip Subcommittee” and undertook a review of more than 80 recreational properties in the town of Barnstable between May and September.

Rene M. King, chairman of the subcommittee, said property needs were analyzed through a matrix including safety, amount of use, diversity of use, shared responsibility with other groups, and equity among the town’s seven villages.

The subcommittee’s 18-page report extensively details recreational properties throughout the town and their needs.

“We observed facilities ‘working as planned,’ other facilities [which] were almost where we’d like them to be, and finally a list of nine facilities that require our attention/assistance in a short amount of time,” the report states.

Ms. King said properties that did not make the “Top Nine” list will not fall off the commission’s radar screen as deserving attention.

Ms. King said the Craigville Beach House topped the priority list as a structure deserving attention both for recreation and historic preservation.

Nocturnal animals are living under the floorboards at the house, and the bathroom stalls are falling apart, according to the report.

“This entire site is functioning in spite of its condition,” the report states. “The recreation commission believes the overall condition of this facility is deplorable as this is a destination of many of the community’s visitors.”

At Lombard Field, the report states, ruts in the field are dangerous and the fence is in disrepair.

In reviewing the Osterville Bay property, the report states, “Osterville has no usable playground of any kind… This facility is ideal for numerous uses if planned correctly.”

As for Lopes Field, the report states, “The fencing is dangerous and an eyesore. The field is all weeds… the infield is stone dust.”

Although the tennis courts at Barnstable-West Barnstable Elementary School and in Cotuit ranked last on the list of nine, the commission said both facilities need serious attention.

The Barnstable-West Barnstable courts, the report states, are not usable in any way and should immediately be removed, possibly rebuilt at another site in West Barnstable.

The Cotuit courts, the report states, are beyond repair, with weeds that have taken over cracks in the surface.

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