2008-06-18 / Front Page

Cleanup required on site of soccer field upgrades

Marlboro seeking bids for project behind middle school
BY REBECCA MORTON Staff Writer

As Marlboro's synthetic turf field project comes to a close, the second portion of the Marlboro Township Park Improvements, Phase II, (soccer fields) is now facing issues of contaminated soil.

John Saffioti, the superintendent of the Marlboro Recreation Department, recently told the News Transcript that the synthetic turf field at the municipal complex off Wyncrest Road has been completed in terms of installation and said residents are making use of it daily.

The soccer field improvement portion of the Marlboro Township Park Improvement, Phase II, is on hold for the moment until remediation work can be conducted at the site behind the Marlboro Middle School, Saffioti said.

A legal notice seeking bids for a site remediation project at the soccer complex recently appeared in a daily newspaper. The work description is listed as soil testing, excavation of contaminated soil, loading and disposal of the soil, importing and placing certified clean fill and topsoil, fertilizing and seeding or sodding, and minor utility repairs and site restoration.

Mayor Jonathan Hornik said tests conducted at the soccer complex showed elevated levels of unspecified contaminants. He said as soon as the test results came in, the fields were closed and the township applied for a grant to help with the anticipated remediation work.

The mayor said it is hoped that the remediation work can be completed soon so that the improvements to the soccer fields can get under way.

Business Administrator Alayne Shepler said Marlboro received money from the Hazardous Discharge Site Remediation Fund to conduct the soil remediation at the soccer complex. Bids received for the project are expected to be read on June 19.

The Marlboro Township Park Improvements, Phase II, is a project started under the administration of former Mayor Robert Kleinberg (2004-07), which included the installation of the synthetic turf field at the municipal complex and improvements to municipal soccer fields behind the Marlboro Middle School, Route 520. As of September 2007 the entire improvement project was estimated to cost $2.6 million.

According to previous articles, Marlboro received a grant for $650,000 from the New Jersey Green Acres Program to help fund the project. With Green Acres money, the township must match the amount provided by the state.

A $255,000 donation from a developer for township parks was also to be used on the project, Al Steinberg, Marlboro's chief financial officer, said previously.

A spokesman for the Monmouth County Park System had also previously confirmed that in February 2006Marlboro officials were told they would receive $100,000 from the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders for the soccer field improvements - the original scope of the project.

The original plan was to upgrade and add soccer fields behind the Marlboro Middle School; the construction of the synthetic turf field at the municipal complex was added at a later stage in the planning of the project.

The Township Council approved a change order at its June 5 meeting in the amount of $11,500.75 to pay for additional work associated with the installation of the turf field. The contract, which had been awarded to Precise Construction of Freehold, was increased from $859,090 to $870,590.75 with the recent change order.

According to the resolution approving the change order, there were unforeseen circumstances involving underground utilities and additional requirements from the Buildings and Grounds Department that led to the need for an increase in funds.

Included within the change order was the installation of two water lines with quick coupler connections, needed for field maintenance and cooling. The relocation of an electric conduit and wire due to grade changes was also needed as the existing conduit needed to be placed at a lower depth to meet electric code requirements.

The installation of a new scoreboard electric conduit and wire was needed after the existing one was removed during site clearing. The existing wire was not marked out due to incomplete as-builts from a previous installation, according to the council's resolution. A chain link fence that had been damaged during tree removal by township employees and additional line striping to the field were also included in the change order.

Councilman Frank LaRocca, who previously questioned the manner in which the synthetic turf field project was handled, asked at the June 5 meeting if there were any more anticipated costs related to the field.

The township engineer told LaRocca he expects one more change order to finalize the closing of the contract.

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