Community Preservation Committee Requests: 1 of 8 – Case Park Phase 2

Weston TAG logo was designed by the Owl and Lisa Battistoni, local resident. It’s really nice, no?

There are eight requests for Weston Community Preservation Act funds this spring. The Owl will summarize these funds requests in order of presentation to the Community Preservation Committee. Note that these requests have not gone through public hearings, and are not up for Town Meeting discussion yet. These are simply presentations to the Community Preservation Committee.

As a review, or perhaps learning for new Massachusetts residents, the Community Preservation Act (CPA) is a state law (M.G.L. Chapter 44B) passed in 2000. Communities that adopt the Act (and yes Weston is one of 176 MA communities to adopt it) create a local dedicated fund for items that fall into the following buckets–open space preservation, preservation of historic resources, development of affordable housing, and the acquisition and development of outdoor recreational facilities. Funds are raised locally for these purposes through a voter-authorized surcharge on local property taxes.

First up, and presented at the January 24, 2022 CPA meeting, is Case Park Restoration and Rehabilitation Phase 2. You can catch the recording at Weston Media Center.

Tree Advisory Group (TAG) Chair Lori Hess and TAG member Carol Lee presented the request. First, Lori summarized what had happened in Phase I which had been a CPA funds request of $45,000 approved in 2017. After long delays due to the death of the landscape architect, pushback from DPW on maintenance, and soil acidity issues, the planting plan was re-designed and the current planting schedule is going forward for fall 2022. A new landscape architect was chosen who has got game on sustainable plantings as well as working with DPWs on lower-maintenance plants. Jacqueline Jackson, Parks Supervisor, also did a great job with her team on removing invasives. Water “rights” were granted by the abutting Scout House.

Phase I to be planted this year is at the triangle in the lower center. Phase 2 is closest to the Library, and the semi-circle to the right is a future phase.

TAG member Carol Lee explained the Phase 2 request. Phase 2 will be on the west side of the park, working with plantings that are native and attract pollinators (like Phase 1), to minimize maintenance and to make the park a “destination” given its proximity to many draws including our awesome Weston Library, Land’s Sake, the elementary school campus and the Scout House. Seating is being considered such as benches and maybe a chess table. Also a three-story slide and a roller coaster. Just checking if you are still reading–that last part is not true.

Here are the pretties to gaze upon. Yeah, your glasses don’t need a new prescription–this really is fuzzy. I will attempt to get a better version in an update later this week.

The budget for phase 2 is $42,000, which is comparable to the phase 1 ask. Timing would be design in fall 2022, and plantings in fall 2023 after getting buy-in from the garden clubs and DPW.

From here, there will be public hearings about the CPC request, and if all goes well, we’ll be hitting buttons for yes or no at the May Town Meeting, the social event of the decade.

Stay tuned for the Owl’s next exciting write-up of CPC requests.

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