Letter: Middlebrook turf field project and neighbors

To the Editors:

Dear First Selectman Vanderslice: Congratulations on your election to lead our town.

I’m writing to share with you my support for Will and Eliot Patty as they defend their personal and property rights against special interest groups in Wilton that seek to turf and light the youth football field at Middlebrook School.

The Pattys have been vilified in letters and on social media as being selfish and working against a project considered by some to be in the “best interest” of the town. Many people do not know that Will and Eliot have contributed generously over the past 12 years to benefit the Town of Wilton. They have participated in and contributed to numerous school and sports groups over the years. The Pattys are the kind of involved residents every town wants and needs.

However, the Pattys have been attacked for protecting themselves from a turf project that could significantly degrade the value of their property. Whether from lights, storm water runoff or health concerns related to the materials used in artificial turf, the Pattys would be directly and negatively affected by the proposed turf field at Middlebrook. Think about how most of our residents would feel if the town wanted to put a cell tower or high-voltage power lines in their backyards. These might be in the town’s best interest, but nearby residents would be very concerned about the potential negative impact on their own property values.

The Town of Wilton has other fields that can accommodate artificial turf without directly affecting its neighbors and families. Three possible alternate sites include Allen’s Meadow 6, Guy Whitten Field adjacent to the high school stadium, and the field behind Comstock Center at Cider Mill. I suggest that the town work with the various sports groups to pursue an alternate plan that does not infringe upon any neighbor’s property — especially that of a good family like the Pattys who have been involved, generous citizens.
David P. Wallace
90 Thunder Lake Road, Dec. 7