|By Carley Dangona|
AGAWAM Along with warm weather, this spring will bring the continued renovations to Borgatti Field to equip the park with a new building that will house a fully functional bathroom, concession stand, storage room and an automated irrigation connection.
Earlier this year, the City Council approved the use of $24,000 in Open Space Community Preservation Act (CPA) funds to proceed with the project.
"The construction began in 2012," Christopher Sparks, director of the Parks & Recreation Department, said. "We've already poured the foundation. We hope to complete the project in late spring or early summer of this year."
He continued, "The building will allow us to better serve the community. Currently, there is limited irrigation for the field, but the automatic timer will enhance the condition of the grass."
According to Sparks, the restroom that exists at the field is not ADA compliant and therefore cannot be used.
Aldo Mancini, commissioner of the Agawam Men's Softball League, submitted the application for CPA funds. He stated that the current facility has been deteriorating for past 10 to 15 years.
"The league spends $1,300 to $1,500 to rent Porta Potties a year," he said. "The infields are the only part of the baseball diamond that are irrigated, but now the whole field will be."
Mancini explained that the $15,000 the league will contribute in addition to the CPA funds are residual dollars from previous budgets. In addition, the members will donate their time and skills to the construction of the building. He added that contractor Gary Suffriti is donating the roof for the building.
Eddie Borgatti, resident and former Agawam Police officer, said, "Aldo has done an awful lot of work on Borgatti Field. The Parks & Recreation Department just put all new signs up too. I'm happy with what they're doing. I was getting discouraged."
He explained that the town decided to name the field after him because he is the person who sought property to establish the park and helped to procure it. "It was quite an honor to have it named after me," he said.
Borgatti added that the Agawam portion of the Connecticut Riverwalk ends at the field, so people utilizing it will have a restroom to use once the building is constructed.
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