Work is under way to replace the soccer fields and improve the drainage at the East Meadow Field of Dreams soccer complex on Salisbury Park Drive, including the installation of a synthetic-turf field.
The fields are in a sump owned by Nassau County, on the East Meadow-Salisbury border, and have been used by the East Meadow Soccer Club for 15 years. The land, previously used as a storm basin, drains poorly and requires extensive maintenance by club officials, said president Eric Schwartz.
The work is a partnership between Nassau County and the soccer club, with the county contributing $750,000 to renovate the fields, and the club putting in about $500,000. “The fields would flood anytime there was a heavy rain,” Schwartz said. “The drainage was throwing it all back onto the field.”
He recalled a recent storm, after which club officials went to survey the damage, and saw a Bobcat construction vehicle that had been left on the field overnight. “And that Bobcat was up to the middle of its windows in water,” Schwartz said.
“When the weather was right, they’re gorgeous,” he said of the fields. “We just had to take care of them with kid gloves, so to speak.”
Mike Martino, a spokesman for the county Department of Public Works, said the work is being done by the county’s drainage requirements contractor, D.F. Stone, and involves making improvements in the storm water section of the basin with new drainage structures, dry wells and piping, as well as deepening the basin.
Concurrently, Martino said, county officials have been using the excess material from the deepening process to elevate the playing surface. County workers, he said, will prepare the playing surface and install sub-base drainage piping and draining material beneath the fields.
The county is currently looking for a vendor to supply and install the synthetic-turf field, Martino said.