The project involves installing permanent light fixtures on Lincoln Field #2, which is the multi-use, artificial turf field to the right when viewed from the street. This field is part of Lincoln Park, located at 52 Lincoln Street, Lexington, Massachusetts.
The lights are needed to increase the availability of fields in Lexington, especially during the fall season when it gets dark early. Extending the hours of the field into the early evening spreads the demand for the field over more hours.
In order to maximize the investment in lights we need a field that can handle repetitive use and play in wet conditions. Only the artificial turf fields at Lincoln satisfy these requirements.
The experiment of using temporary lights at Lincoln Field #2 during the fall has successfully demonstrated that a lighted field allows children to maintain their sports activities throughout the fall, even when it’s wet. However, diesel-powered lights come with some drawbacks: environmental (noise, exhaust), safety (light glare, uneven lighting, heavy machinery near the field), and logistical (seasonal setup/breakdown, staff training, refueling).
Friends of Lincoln Field Lights (“FOLFL”) was founded by board members of the Lexington United Soccer Club to manage the fundraising and construction for the project. LUSC and its individual Board members have contributed over 20% of the project budget.
FOLFL is seeking contributions from individuals and organizations throughout Lexington, whether associated with LUSC or not.
The total cost of the project is estimated at $550,000. The extra foundation work due to the soil conditions of the landfill adds approximately $175,000 compared to installation on typical soils. As a point of reference, the cost to re-turf each field at Lincoln Park was approximately $600,000.
The Town was approached early on for funding. However, this project follows historical precedents where comparable projects were privately funded, and then donated to the Town. Both the baseball/softball lights at Center Fields, and the bathrooms at Lincoln Park, were privately funded.
The project will be funded 100% by private donations from individuals and organizations. Upon completion, FOLFL will donate the lights to the Town of Lexington for the benefit of the entire community.
Construction is scheduled for summer 2017, with lights operational for the fall 2017 season.
Neighborhood meetings were organized in 2014 and 2015 to hear neighbors’ concerns and seek input on shaping the project. Neighbors receive periodic email updates for Town meetings and project updates.
The Lexington Department of Recreation and Community Programs allocates field space to different user groups according to their written policies. The lighted field will be handled the same way, and as such, no guarantees have been granted. This will be a gift to the T own.
LUSC would like to use the lights until 8:30PM, with an extra 15 minutes to allow for safe pick-up.
Any sports currently using Lincoln Fields should benefit from the lights because by extending the useable hours of the field, it will spread the demand for the field across more hours.
Every town around Lexington already has at least one artificial turf field with lights: Burlington, Bedford, Lincoln (at HS in Sudbury), Waltham, Belmont, Arlington, Bedford, Belmont, Winchester, Woburn. Going out to the next set of towns, at least 17 towns have such lights.
The Lincoln Street Landfill was closed in 1963. Over the following ten years the landfill was capped with soil and rocky material from regional infrastructure projects, and developed into recreational fields. The foundations for the light poles will rest on steel pilings that will be driven through the landfill. The concrete foundations near the surface will be backfilled will the excavated cap materials. The design and construction of the foundations will be done under the auspices of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Air & Waste – Solid Waste Section.
The lights will be 70 feet tall, the same as the athletic lights at the baseball and softball fields at Center Fields. There will be four light poles located approximately 30 feet from the edge of the field, and situated roughly in the four corners of the field. The height of the light poles allows the light to be aimed downward onto the field, eliminating any light spillage outside of the confines of the park.
There will be eight lamps mounted on each light pole, with an extra two lamps mounted on the backside of one pole for parking lighting. The lamps will likely be industry-standard 1500W metal halide lamps.
The lighting equipment comes from Musco Lighting with a 25-year warranty, which includes all maintenance, including lamp replacement. Energy costs from the operation of the lights will be charged by the Town to the permitted users.
No. All contributions big and small are appreciated.