A map for new fields in Greenbrier Park

A map for new fields in Greenbrier Park

New Sports Field for Greenbrier Park

Architects drawing blueprints for the new fields in Greenbrier Park, near Yorktown High School, gave an overview of the project Monday night to members of Arlington's Environment and Energy Conservation Commission. The project, slated to begin Nov. 15, will add a level for an additional sports field to the sloping, 17.5 acre hillside park. It now has two.

According to Molly Guenzer of Lewis, Scully and Gionet, the architectural firm hired for the project, the final design is the product of several meetings with members of the local community and includes measures to address the concerns of many neighbors. Among them is a state-of-the-art lighting system that prevents the park's bright stadium lighting from spilling over into residential streets and concrete dividing walls for noise reduction. Nearby residents will also be able to use the park even if Yorktown sporting events fill up one of the three fields.

On the new baseball field, Yorktown's team and local clubs will have the advantages of new bleachers, new dugouts and new bullpens. The current field has none. Guenzer said her firm is hoping make the diamond as large as possible without effecting other aspects of the park, which also features a football field and a eurothane running track.

THE COMMISSION ALSO heard commentary from David Haring, president of the Yorktown Civic Association. Haring said the plan has seen a high degree of community input but some neighbors are still somewhat wary of the construction plan. Most of the concern, he said, stems from the potential run-off and mud that could be seen during construction on the steep hillside.

"During construction, that whole facility is going to be a mud pit," Haring said.

The new fields will be made up of artificial turf. Guenzer said water will drain off the hillside in much the same way it does now. Designers have planned to put up a fence that would prevent mud and silt from spilling into neighboring streets, but Haring said residents living at the bottom of Greenbrier's slopes will likely see more mud.

"It is going to take more than a silt fence to keep those people happy," he said.

On the lighting system, already a source of some complaints, Haring said residents are hesitant to go along with the idea.

"We're guardedly optimistic about the lighting system," Haring said. "We certainly expect that it will be better than it is today."

Haring added that the civic association has asked that the lights be turned out by 10:30 p.m. each night.

The commission also heard from Kevin Petty, a resident of 27th street, which runs along the park's boundaries. His worry is the noise level. The new turf field, he said, will allow Yorktown and other teams to play more games. That means more noise.

"What we're concerned about is the increased usage that field will provide," he said. "Knowing what the noise level is now, what will it be after construction?"

Parking, he said, is also a problem. The original master plan called for about 90 parking spaces. The current plan includes only 52.

"Traffic is going to be increased just by the sheer fact that more games are going to be played on that field," he said.

The new artificial field will be the fifth in Arlington County.