Whalley Park moves forward

SOUTHWICK – The Select Board signed an access agreement for Whalley Park this week after receiving an update from Rob Levesque on the project.
Property owners John and Kathy Whalley, Conservation Commission Coordinator Dennis Clark, and Parks Commissioner Kelly Magni also attended the meeting Monday night.
Levesque offered updates under several categories, including general permitting and compliance, additional work, items to be handled by the Whalleys, and items to be handled by the town.
Levesque noted that there was about eight feet of conservation land that was imposed on while clearing the property.
“Mr. Whalley signed an action consent order to plant six to eight trees in that area and make sure they grow,” said Levesque.
There was much discussion, said Levesque, about the septic system and calculation of flow from the park.
“We’re estimating 6,500 gallons of flow a day, which includes flow from a pavilion that is not yet built,” said Levesque.
Levesque said the project currently has three buildings, including two bathrooms and a maintenance building, and a very small building for the water systems.
Levesque said there are plans for a third bathroom near the proposed pavilion and suggested that an operations manual should be written.
“It should contain operations and maintenance information. For example, how the irrigation system works,” said Levesque.
The Whalleys have purchased equipment, including backstops and two volleyball sets, and had a large playscape constructed.
Selectman Arthur Pinell said he and the board planned to review the report.
“We need to look this over and decide how to proceed,” he said.
Located at 42 Powder Mill Road, Whalley Park is an $8 million, 70-acre park donated by the Whalleys. The park will include playing fields, a playground and parking for 275 cars. Whalley is turning over the park to the town for public use, as well as use by the Recreation Center, and will be maintained by the Parks and Recreation Department.

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