Practice fields to be planned

Friday, February 6, 2009

Lewisburg's City Council is scheduled Tuesday to consider a recommendation from its Recreation Committee to hire a landscape engineer to draft a master plan for about 20 acres where sports practice fields could be developed.

The Council is scheduled to convene at 6 p.m. in City Hall on Tuesday when a far more complicated land deal is to be discussed again publicly for the sixth time: purchase of land for the business park where a right of way must be eliminated to make the land usable.

As for the sports fields, those 20 acres adjacent to South Side Park were purchased recently and would be usable as practice fields for football, baseball, soccer, T-ball and a variety of other sports, according to City Manager Eddie Fuller.

"We could go out and mark a field here and mark another field there," Fuller said, "but where we need to build a restroom, parking lot and the fields, is what we want to know."

The fields aren't to be developed for school sports, officials said.

City officials have spoken with representatives from Smith, Freeman and Roberts, an engineering firm in Nashville that has developed plans for sports facilities. State law absolves local governments from the responsibility of calling for competitive bids for professional services such as those from architects, engineers, attorneys and accountants. However, those services can be subjected to competition through a system which has the government issue a request for proposals (RFP). An RFP also relieves the government from having to draft specifications for a work contract. It does, however, provide a variety of alternatives to be considered.