Globe Local

DEDHAM

Dedham board ‘not giving up’ on proposed recreation complex

Dedham’s recreation director said his board will continue to look for ways to build a recreation complex on town-owned land known as Manor Fields — despite a Special Town Meeting vote in late January rejecting the $14.5 million proposal.

“I don’t think it’s dead,” Robert Stanley said in a phone interview. “We are absolutely not giving up.”

Stanley said options include scaling back the ambitious plan, which includes fields for soccer, football, and field hockey, two dog parks, tennis and basketball courts, a playground, concession and restroom facilities, and 1.5 miles of walking trails. He said it may also be possible to rework the current design to make it less costly.

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“The feedback we got from people is we want to do something there, but we don’t know if $14.5 million is what we want to do,” Stanley said.

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The project needed a two-thirds vote of Town Meeting before it could go before voters in a townwide ballot asking if the town would pay for the work by borrowing money beyond the limits set by Proposition 2½.

The project received 66.3 percent of the vote of the November 2019 Town Meeting — just shy of the required 66.6 percent, Stanley said. The vote in the latest Town Meeting failed to get a two-thirds approval as well, with 150 votes in favor to 85 against.

Johanna Seltz can be reached at seltzjohanna@gmail.com.