SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – At Tuesday night’s Township Council meeting, a presentation was given by the Parks and Recreation Director Ray Poerio on the installation of a new pavilion in Brookside Park. This would be the fourth new pavilion constructed in a Scotch Plains park since the initiation of the Parks Department’s Five-Year Master Plan two years ago.
The need for this new facility stems primarily from the graffiti that is present of many other sites in the park, the need for new rental space in Brookside Park, and summer camps that operate in the park having new places to shelter campers either from storms or heat alerts.
Due to these considerations, Poerio has advocated for a metal pavilion, because they are not as easily vandalized as wooden structures and are grounded in the event of a lightning strike.
The total cost of the 64-by-30 foot pavilion, including its purchase, installation and the new asphalt pathway connecting it to the rest of the parks’ paths, brings the total cost up to roughly $63,000. This is about $20,000 cheaper than other metal pavilions Poerio used as examples in his presentation. There was no statement given on construction time.
“I would be confident in saying that all future constructions in our parks should be a blueprint of what we want to leave behind,” said Deputy Mayor Colleen Gialanella, who was concerned that the facility would be an eyesore if not done right. Nevertheless, she is steadfastly behind the Parks Department’s proposal. “If Brookside Park is to be the future hub of recreation in this town, why not make it both functional and aesthetically pleasing?”
However, Councilman Mickey Marcus showed some concern about the equal distribution of the Parks Department’s attention.“[Brookside Park] isn’t the only park in town… All our parks should be treated fairly.”
Despite a few differences of opinion over some details, the council appears to be supportive of the proposal, which is expected to be put to a vote next month.