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Mercy Looking to Make Over Field in Dobbs Ferry

DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. – While Mercy College is looking to create a new synthetic turf field for shared use with the village, the Dobbs Ferry Board of Trustees has been a bit underwhelmed by the initial design.

“I think it’s a great idea and I think it’ll be great for the school and the community,” said Dobbs Ferry Mayor Hartley Connett. “What I think it's missing is just in the whole vision.”

With no scoreboard or bleachers currently in the field, designed to house baseball, lacrosse, soccer and field hockey, Connett said it could use some improvement. The college wants replace the grass field with a synthetic turf field. Joe Schaefer, the Mercy College chief operating officer, countered that since it is a multiuse facility the school is seeking flexibility with the field.

“The goal was to make sure we have the field in by this summer so that it is playable by the fall,” he said.

While the board was more than open to the idea, it said it would like a more comprehensive field design, since it will be shared with the community for various uses.

“If I could make a suggestion, don’t be afraid of the boards,” said Trustee Catherine Kay. “If it’s to sidestep something uncomfortable or a conflict (with the village), don’t do it.”

Dobbs Ferry resident and youth football coach Paddy Steinschneider said he loves the idea for the field, but it needs to be improved to benefit the community as much as the college.

“I think they need to take one more step here,” he said. “We need to see what benefits we can get here. I think we need to have it be a field that serves our needs as well.”

The new synthetic turf field is said to have much-improved storm-water drainage, according to Anthony Catalano of the developer Woodard and Curran.

“The beauty of these fields is they are virtually 100 percent permeable to water,” he said.

Water would drain through the field through 6 to 8 inches of stone and into a flat drain before flowing into a catch basin. The water there then drains out to several discharge points. This improved drainage leads to higher playability and thus more time available for the school and the village to use it.

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