Clark Council Approves Synthetic Turf Field for Bartell Park

Bartell Park is home to the Clark Soccer Club. Credits: Elizabeth Clee
Mayor Sal Bonaccorso hopes that construction on a new turf field will begin in April. Credits: Elizabeth Clee
Mayor Sal Bonaccorso hopes that construction on a new turf field will begin in April. Credits: Elizabeth Clee

CLARK, NJ – The Clark Township council approved a bond ordinance at this month’s council meeting authorizing the construction of a turf field at Bartell Park. The field will be benefit the Clark Soccer Club, which is paying for a large portion of the field's construction and upkeep.

“The Clark Soccer League came to me in need of help putting a turf field over at Bartell," Mayor Sal Bonaccorso said. "They have sunk hundreds of thousands of dollars…into that field.  We have tried to help them as much as we can over the years. It comes down to the more use you have, the worse the field gets.  This can be corrected by using the turf.”

According to the ordinance, the total cost of the turf field is $680,000.  The money will be paid as follows:

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  • $40,000 from the Clark Soccer League
  • $79,000 from the County of Union Kids Recreation Fund grant
  • $39,000 down payment from the Township of Clark

The remaining monies will be bonded by the town and paid back by the Clark Soccer League over the next ten years.

“They [do not have] enough money for credit to go and borrow that money.  But they do have enough money to make yearly payments to pay it back,” Bonaccorso said.  “They have demonstrated to John [Laezza, business administrator] and I that they can pay their portion every year … back to this community.”

“On the other hand…it’s our field.  So, if they ever collapse and don’t want to do it anymore, we would have a turf field for our recreation programs,” added Bonaccorso.

Bonaccorso said that they hope to start construction in April so that the turf field will be ready for the fall season.

“During the construction period, you may see a couple extra trucks in your neighborhood for a little bit of time to get materials in there.  Other than that, it should not be an inconvenience to you at all,” said Bonaccorso.

The mayor also added that the turf field is environmentally sound and construction of the turf field at Arthur L. Johnson High School went “fine.”

Addressing concerns of recent reports throughout the state of issues with turf fields, the mayor said that the field at the high school is fine and they haven’t had any problems with it.

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