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New Haven-Adams Township Park board to consider longtime community ‘wish list’ project

This is a drawing of the proposed reconfigured layout of Havenhurst Park to allow the New Haven-Adams Township Parks and Recreation Department to move all of its baseball and softball diamonds to the park. (Courtesy of New Haven-Adams Township Parks and Recreation Department)

The New Haven-Adams Township Parks and Recreation Department board will be invited to take a big step toward a community dream when they meet at 6 p.m. Monday at the New Haven Community Center, 7500 Indiana 930 E.

Park board members will be asked to approve a master plan for Havenhurst Park that includes putting all of the parks department’s baseball and softball diamonds at Havenhurst, 211 N. Rufus St.

Board members also will be asked to allow the parks department to begin raising the estimated $2 million to $2.5 million needed to make the dream a reality.

“It has been on the wish list for this community for a very long time,” said Mike Clendenen, New Haven-Adams Township Parks superintendent.

Over the years, study committees have looked at the issue and all recommended placing the parks department’s baseball and softball diamonds at Havenhurst, Clendenen said. The goal is to raise all of the money from other sources, even if that means paying for it one diamond at a time.

The plan calls for reconfiguring the park, which currently has five ball diamonds, to accommodate nine ball diamonds, Clendenen said. That includes using land occupied now by a football field, which would be moved to the New Haven Community Center’s grounds.

Indiana Tech renovated one of the diamonds for its women’s softball team’s use last season, and that diamond will be the hub around which all of the others are built, Clendenen said. Indiana Tech won’t need the diamond in the future because the university is building its own athletics complex, which includes a softball stadium, on a portion of the Donald Ross Golf Club property it bought early this year in south Fort Wayne.

Combining all baseball and softball fields at Havenhurst has three big advantages for New Haven, Clendenen said:

• Parents and families can stay in one location, regardless of whether they have children playing baseball and softball or in different age levels of the sports.

• The ball diamonds will be easier for parks department staff to maintain because they all will be in one location.

• The complex will give New Haven the ability to host baseball or softball tournaments, which can be an economic boost for the community.

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