Hamden’s Planning and Zoning Commission has approved the proposal for adding new athletic fields near Sleeping Giant State Park.
In a recent memorandum from Daniel Kops, the acting town planner of Hamden, the Planning and Zoning Commission approved Quinnipiac University to build two new playing fields. The fields are to be utilized for recreational purposes.
The application states the field was “for increased usage and flexibility during late fall and early spring for all University intercollegiate teams,” according to the memorandum.
The new project has two components, according to Vice President of Facilities and Capital Planning Sal Filardi. The first is the replacement of the woven artificial field currently used by field hockey and lacrosse with a new infill artificial turf field. The new field will be used by lacrosse and soccer. A building for locker rooms and restrooms with permanent seating and a press box above will also be added. Filardi said construction on the turf replacement will start this fall.
The second component of the project is the replacement of the natural turf field currently used by rugby with a new woven artificial turf field for field hockey. Filardi said this component has conditional approval from Inland Wetlands Committee of Hamden. Women’s rugby will relocate to the current natural turf soccer field, according to Filardi.
Nadya Gill, a sophomore on the women’s soccer team, thinks that she and her fellow athletes will benefit from new fields and facilities.
“The fields we are using right now are getting worn out so it’s nice to see a new field being built,” Gill said. “As for students who are fans of watching the games, it is nice for them as well since the new facilities will be an upgrade of what we currently have so hopefully better and more comfortable for students to watch games.”
Although Gill is in favor of the new fields, she acknowledged the potential negative aspects to construction.
“The building time and noise may be inconvenient for those living near the construction,” she said. “And it could disturb people who want quiet when they hike.”
The new fields and stadiums would not have a negative impact on surrounding residential neighborhoods, according to the memorandum.
The memorandum states that the new sound system will be more effective at preventing noise pollution than the sound system the university currently uses. The sports activity for each new field is seasonal and does not consistently interfere with people visiting Sleeping Giant State Park.
Graduate student and former member of the women’s soccer team, Jessica Jankowski, said she is in favor of expanding the Quinnipiac sports program by building the new fields.
“The bigger Quinnipiac sports get, the more students come, the more money Hamden generates for local businesses,” she said.