Amherst playing fields … other alternatives

To the Editor:

We have exhausted our options in the approval process for Acorn Fields in Amherst. Our applications to the Planning Board and Zoning Board of Adjustments have been unsuccessful because of current zoning restrictions. Our offer to lease the fields to the Selectmen has been rejected, they will only consider a lease with a purchase at the end.

We love the property and don’t want to sell it. What we want is to have kids playing on the fields. We are hoping that the vote in March will allow us to reapply to the boards with changes to the zoning that would allow us to make the fields available to Amherst teams.

As this is no guarantee, we are also discussing having another town use the property, as allowed by state statute, just like Amherst Selectmen could lease the property with no approvals needed. Is this a way to avoid the current zoning? Yes, it is, but what other option do we have? If the boards can’t approve fields, and the Amherst Selectmen won’t use them unless we agree to sell – now or in the future – our only remaining option is to change the zoning or lease to another town.

Hopefully, we can get Amherst kids playing on these fields again, but if not … other towns are very interested in having their teams play on the fields.

Hopefully the Amherst voters will vote yes on Articles 48 and 49 and no on Article 50 so we can solve the playing field crisis for Amherst teams.

BRAD KNIGHT

Owner of Acorn Fields