To the Editor:
The volunteer leaders of Wilton’s nonprofit youth sports organizations and the Wilton Athletic and Recreation Foundation (WARF) recommend all vote ‘Yes’ on Saturday, May 6 for the new, upgraded field bonding for Allen’s Meadows.
WARF stands for access and opportunity for Wilton youth and community members. Sports and recreation serve every child’s well-being, foster positive relationships, and develop future leaders.
The opportunity presented by this bonding proposal is to transform a hard-to-maintain and sensitive existing field into a best-in-class, safe, weather-resistant, lighted, high-capacity, and flexible multi-sport field to better serve our youth.
Here’s why this new, upgraded field is needed now and is an exciting strategic asset:
Wilton Field Usage and Demand Exceeds Capacity.
- Wilton lacks the quantity and quality of fields to support our current 5,000-plus youth sports and recreation participants, impacting accessibility and opportunities to play for all.
- Overuse leads to fields that struggle to be maintained at reliable and playable standards, reducing quality and safety of play.
- Town maintenance costs for grass fields will rise 30% over just two years; costs will continue to rise with still limited means to improve quality (due to overuse) and no path to more capacity.
Step Function Expansion in Capacity, Improved Quality and Safety of All Wilton Fields.
- Expands capacity by five- to 10-times over the predecessor field considering hours of play and players per season the field can support
- Absorbs a large portion of current field usage, supports increasing demand, and creates room for new programs currently unable to obtain field time
- Alleviates pressure and stress on our grass field portfolio, enabling appropriate rest, rehabilitation and more focused conditioning of those fields
Secures the Property for Wilton Benefit, Solves the Critical Need and Drives Value
- New, upgraded field approved/permitted by State lease ensures beneficial and high-value use for Wilton and protects from less desirable uses (e.g. roadway, staging areas, housing/apartment complexes or other future unknown development out of our control)
- Costs [approximately] $1/month [per] resident and is presented at [approximately] 80% of cost after WARF private contribution (as compared to all other bonding at 100% of cost)
- Builds enduring value for Wilton through
- enhanced access, quality, and safety of play for youth
- improved everyday lives for families through time and cost savings
- reduced or better-deployed town maintenance dollars and resources
- new potential revenue opportunities
- increased positive economic activity the field will drive
And to clarify/remind, bonded capital projects do not influence the school budget. Bonding and budget are different and distinct from each other.
Vote ”Yes’ on Saturday, May 6 to show commitment to our youth/students, their families, and the place we call home and love, Wilton.
The Wilton Athletic and Recreation Foundation Team
WARF’s mission is to build and execute on a shared community vision for multi-sport fields and recreational play spaces for the benefit of Wilton. To learn more or get in touch, please visit the WARF website.
Wilton Youth Sports Organizations
Wilton Youth Field Hockey
Wilton Youth Football and Cheer
Wilton Lacrosse Association
Wilton Little League
Wilton Soccer Association
Wilton Softball and Baseball Association