Another Providence communication breakdown

Although Providence Mayor David N. Cicilline has fostered significant improvements in city government, his administration is again being taken to task for what a group of concerned West Side residents call a lack of communication. The same gripe has previously been sounded about City Hall's approach to planning & development, and about changes at the West Broadway School.

Linda Borg has the details in today's ProJo:

A group of West End neighbors is crying foul over the park commission’s decision to turn a baseball field at the Dexter Training Ground into a dog park.

“It’s an outrage,” said Charles Pinning, who lives two blocks from the park and plays baseball there. “I’m one of the founders of the West Broadway Neighborhood Association. I’m at the park at least three times a week and I learned about this by picking up the newspaper!”

Even dog owners such as June Massey, who lives a block from the park, were shocked by the decision.

“This is a densely populated neighborhood with many dogs, but also with many children. Having a ball field in a public park is totally appropriate.”

The Board of Parks Commissioners voted in October to open the city’s second official dog park at the training grounds, next to the Cranston Field Armory. At the time, Parks Supt. Alix Ogden said the dog park would be located on an unused softball field, adding that the site is ideal because it is fenced. Over the years, the field has become a popular spot for dog walkers, especially in the winter, when the park is vacant.

But some neighbors say that the parks commission made the decision without consulting with residents who live nearby and use the park. David Talan, a longtime youth basketball coach, said the baseball park is frequently used by children and youth teams.

. . . .

Ogden could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Adding insult to injury is how this location is quite close to the place where professional baseball began in Providence.

As a longtime participant in the Providence Coed Softball League, I've been struck by how the condition of Collier Field, near the Bonanza Bus Terminal, hardly corresponds with what might reasonably be expected from Cicilline's improved City Hall. The grass is often overgrown in the summer, the field is poorly maintained, and infield flooding makes it generally unusable for a day or two after a heavy rain. Maybe it's false nostalgia, but veteran umpires say Collier was better kept during the Buddy era. I do know this: the diamonds at Pawtucket's vastly superior Hank Soar Complex are the softball equivalent of playing at Fenway Park, while Collier might be akin to a rock-strewn lot in Cartagena.

| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Not For Nothing Archives