Beginning in 2013, Verona Deputy Mayor Bob Manley said one of the council's main issues will be seeing through a project to bring new athletic fields to Hilltop Park.
During 2012 meetings, the Council has reviewed plans for a new baseball field, multi-purpose field, walking trails and an amphitheater as part of Phase II of the Hilltop Park development plan.
The proposed plan also calls for improvements to two existing fields, Veterans Field and Centennial Field, by adding a new press box and resodding the fields.
“We hope the voting on the field for Hilltop can happen very early in the new year,” said Manley. “We hope to get shovels in the ground in spring.”
The project would take approximately 18 months to complete, which would take one full construction season and part of another, said Township Engineer Jim Helb.
“It is conceivable that shovels could be in the ground by late March or early April,” said Township Manager Joe Martin during an October 2012 council meeting. “If that's the case the project could be finished by fall 2014.”
The Township of Cedar Grove is also looking forward to expanding its recreational services in the new year.
In November of 2012 the Council unanimously agreed to move forward with the design phase for a redeveloped multipurpose sports field at Panther Park.
“The completion of Panther Park is going to happen in 2013 and I'm very excited about that,” said Mayor Peter Tanella. “In the new year we will also continue to work with our colleagues to look for savings.”
The completed Panther Park will feature a lighted football, soccer and lacrosse field with stands, a walking and running track and concession stands and bathrooms.
“The projected cost for the project is $1.8 million which means about a $27 tax increase per household,” said Cedar Grove Councilman Joseph Chiusolo.