Why is this happening?
- Worcester State needs parking, but is not willing to manage its own parking problem on its own land.
- Unlike any other business in this city, it has been allowed to expand without providing for its own needs.
- Because this public parcel of fifteen acres also contains the woodlands above the field, this plan allows Worcester State to extend its footprint deep into public lands.
Why does this matter?
- The City is planning to give public land, land that belongs to the residents of this city, to Worcester State. This is YOUR land.
- Open green space is important to our health, the environment, and the value of our homes. It is a public good. Are we willing to see it turned into a parking lot?
- Youth sports teams, adult athletic teams, and ordinary residents using those fields and public hiking trails will lose them, permanently.
How could this happen?
- This property is under the jurisdiction of the School Committee. City Manager’s office is pressuring its members to declare the Chandler Magnet ball fields surplus.
- If they do so, the fields would be released to the City.
- Then the City would sell or lease them to WSU for use as a commercially-operated parking lot.
Why have I not heard about this?
- This proposal, in the works for over a year, has been kept secret from the public.
- School Committee and City Council members have been told about it by ones and twos, so that the issue can be kept off of official agendas.
- The City Manager’s office plans to call a neighborhood meeting with those people whose homes are near the field, and to present it as a done deal.