The town is still looking for input on what should be done with property on Chandler Road.

Last week, two meetings – one virtual and one in person – were held to gather input from the public. Residents can still offer their input on possible uses and read comments from others on the town’s website,

“If we do this right, it will be a project that is reflective of our community’s priorities,” said Town Manager Andrew Flanagan. “It really is a blank canvas for potential possibilities.”

The 44 acres are at 138 and 140 Chandler Road. The town’s website says this “allows the community to plan numerous potential programming options and conserve a great amount of open space.”

The land was purchased by the town for $4 million with the acquisition approved at the last Town Meeting.

The town is looking to acquire another piece of land that abuts the Chandler Road property. The site totals about 1.7 acres and would cost just over $400,000 if approved at Town Meeting.

But Flanagan said the overall plan is not contingent on the acquisition of this small piece of land.

At two sessions for public input, a few options were raised multiple times. Some residents expressed a desire for passive recreation, including jogging and walking trails.

There was also a need voiced to keep the entire area as green as possible, either through green energy or limiting pavement as much as possible. There was also a wish for a softball field, ice rink, pickleball court, playgrounds, tennis courts and community gardens.

Having permanent restrooms at the location is also important to residents.

Numerous comments have been left on the town website asking for the site to include a softball field. Residents cited a lack of playing fields for the girls softball team. One person asked for a turf field.

Flanagan said it is typical for the town to give the public plenty of opportunities to comment on such a project.

“For any major town project that the town moves forward, we have considerable public input,” he said. “We had a really strong turnout.”

Flanagan said residents want a place that will “really provide an opportunity for a little bit of something for everybody in the community.”

The town, however, will not be able to offer everything, he said.

“It’s going to be our goal to do as much as reasonably possible, but at the end of the day, all of the pieces have to fit,” Flanagan said.

He said wetlands prohibit certain uses on the property. But more passive uses would be allowed in those areas, Flanagan said.

“They are a consideration in the final design but they are no means an obstruction to moving forward with the final designs,” Flanagan said.

The town received assurance the property is safe for public use, he said.

“An independent environmental analysis determined that there is no contamination on the site,” Flanagan said.

BSC Group, a civil engineering firm, is working with the town on the project. Flanagan said BSC Group is assisting the town with gathering public input and drawing up plans.

Flanagan said the final plan would most likely be voted on at Town Meeting in 2023.

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