The Borough Council approved plans for the Madison Recreation Complex field house to be built on the site of turf fields project, under construction behind the high school on Ridgedale Avenue, Monday evening. The 24-x40 bilevel structure will include a concession stand, bathrooms, and underground storage.
Brian Agnew, a volunteer with the Madison Athletic Foundation, spoke on behalf of the organization and said that because of the "tremendous fundraising efforts" on the part of volunteers and the Borough Council, the cost of the field house, at approximately $117,000, is less than half of what was originally estimated.
Agnew reiterated that the cost will be entirely generated by continued fundraising efforts and will have no impact on taxpayers.
The design for the building, which will appear barn-like in keeping with the local aesthetic, Agnew said, was donated by local architect, Alan Andreas. In addition tiles, toilets and sinks for the bathroom were also donated.
Council member Don Links said anyone wishing to donate fryers, a gas stove or a kitchen sink should "please step right up."
Council member and Democratic mayoral candidate Bob Conley said seeing a full fundraising plan would be helpful and asked that the MAF provide one.
Agnew said the MAF has two major campaigns coming up that will involve asking families involved involved in Madison Recreation programs for support. A 50/50 raffle, if approved at the Nov. 14 council meeting, will raise $100,000, as the MAF plans to sell 2,000 tickets for $100 per ticket, with the proceeds divided between one winner and the MAF.
Andrea Waresk presented Agnew with two checks totaling $3,300 from the girls' field hockey teams. Mayor Mary-Anna Holden also contributed $2,000, which she received for throwing out the first pitch at a Quest Diagnostics softball game.
Several residents, including Jean Reynolds, expressed concern that no baseline test of the soil or stormwater run-off had been conducted.
Holden and council member Robert Catalanello both said the Borough Council has been within the scope of every statute in the state throughout the project.
"We are complying with the law," Catalanello said, and pointed out that no such voluntary testing had been performed at the turf fields built by the Board of Education. "Where do you draw the lines?"
Catalanello and Holden both maintained that it is currently too late for any such testing as the complex is already under construction.