Task force working on plans for park

August 22, 2017 by  

Terry Hasseltine, executive director of the Maryland Sports Commission, talked to a group this month to present ideas for the future of a local park.

In 2009, Frederick bought what was once the Hargett Farm, between I-70 and Butterfly Lane, in order to develop it into the Westside Regional Park.

G.E. Fielder & Associates has created a master plan for the park, which the task force adopted. The Fielder plan designates walking trails, open spaces that will feature picnic pavilions, and various facilities for use by the community.

The park comprises 136 acres, and much of the land has been earmarked for 11 sports fields, which can be used in a number of ways. Hasseltine would like to see the park focus on kids’ sports, which he believes will help make Frederick a magnet for sports tourism. He notes that youth sport is a multi-billion dollar business, and says that a huge majority of Americans with children between the ages of 8 and 16 put more money into their children’s sports activities than into their retirement funds.

Hasseltine believes that including sports fields that offer enough space to hold tournaments in the park’s design will meet a regional need for such facilities, and boost the tourism economy in Frederick.

Projects like this are fluid until plans are finalized, and information can be confusing. Officials can help simplify the work by providing presentation folders for people to use to organize materials.