Yorktown Secures $6.1M for Shrub Oak Sports Complex

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The Town of Yorktown has $6.1 million in the bank that can be used for the construction of a state-of-the-art sports complex planned off Stony Street in Shrub Oak.

With $1.5 million already received by allowing the installation of a larger natural gas pipeline on seven acres of town-owned property, the Yorktown Town Board voted last week to accept an additional $4.6 million for the use of 3.8 acres for further pipeline work.

Of that $4.6 million, $500,000 settled what Councilman Greg Bernard termed a “friendly lawsuit” between the town and Enbridge (formerly Spectra Energy) over eminent domain issues.

Supervisor Michael Grace explained part of the compensation negotiated by town officials centered on Legacy Field having to be shut down during the construction period since the pipeline runs directly through that facility.

“They (Enbridge) wanted to keep it (Legacy Field) open so they didn’t have to compensate us,” Grace said, adding town officials were concerned about the safety of those who might frequent the field while the pipeline work was underway.

The Granite Knolls Sports Complex is slated to include two multi-purpose turf fields, a baseball field with a press box and bleachers, a golf putting green, basketball courts, handball courts, a pavilion, playground equipment, and restrooms on a 15-acre section of town-owned land.

Montesano Bros., Inc., owned by Yorktown residents, submitted the winning bid of $3.8 million for the project, but Grace noted that price tag did not cover the cost of the turf, lighting and some of the buildings, which he estimated could be an additional $300,000 to $400,000. A wide range of bids came in as high as $9.6 million.

“It’s not going to come close (to $6.1 million),” Grace said. “It will give the town an improvement that won’t be rivaled anywhere. This is a fantastic project.”

The site, located next to the former Phoenix House and recently approved Shrub Oak International School, was purchased by the town in 2010 for passive recreation and has been used by Yorktown Athletic Club football for practices in recent years.

While emphasizing he fully supported the sports complex, Councilman Vishnu Patel said he was not prepared to vote for the three resolutions presented at last week’s meeting since the details were provided at the last minute, and several questions remained unanswered.

“I won’t vote for resolutions involving more than $4 million without having read them first,” Patel said. “I support construction of the recreation complex, but it is my responsibility to ensure that it is done in an open and honest way with taxpayers fully informed about what they will have to pay.”

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