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Youth baseball field proposed near Scottsdale Farms in Milton
by Nicole Dow
February 28, 2013 11:51 AM | 2937 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
One Milton landowner hopes to expand the opportunities for children’s baseball in the city. Luca Gianturco, who owns property on Birmingham Highway between Birmingham and Nix roads, is asking the city for a special use permit for a portion of his land to be used as a baseball field for local youth.

“Since its inception, the city of Milton has found it no reason to add any athletic fields. There’s a shortage,” Scott Reece, a representative for the landowner, explained to residents Wednesday at a community zoning information meeting.

The field, located south of Gianturco’s nursery business Scottsdale Farms, would not include any lights or loudspeaker system, Reece said. Gianturco has requested permission to build an 8,800-square-foot barn, which would be used as an indoor practice facility. He is also asking the city for a variance to delete the required 75-foot buffer and instead provide a 50-foot setback along the north and east property lines.

“The concept is he’s trying to maintain a rural farm atmosphere,” Reece said. “The area around the baseball field will be fenced and it will have livestock … sheep and goats, maybe a pony.”

Neighbors at the meeting raised issues about the new activity proposed for the property.

“I’m concerned about the noise, parking, lights, use, traffic — all the things that a neighbor would be concerned about,” said resident David Bateman, who lives south of the field. “I don’t want to wake up one day and be surprised that there are cars parked all over there and lights and a concession stand.”

Reece said it is in Gianturco’s intent to dedicate the field to just one specific home team. Parking and restrooms would be provided at Scottsdale Farms. Robyn MacDonald, a planner with Milton’s department of community development, said the city can write certain conditions in the permit, such as hours of operation and where parking is allowed.

Reece said he would bring the neighbors’ concerns to Gianturco and see what they could work out.

Wednesday’s meeting was just the first step in the process to acquire a special use permit, MacDonald said. The request is scheduled to go before the design review board on Tuesday. The planning commission will discuss the matter March 26, and the mayor and city council will review the request on April 22.

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