New Athletic Fields Project

In 2016 the City purchased 50 acres of land from the Foundation for Seacoast Health. The property runs between Campus Drive, off of West Road, and the Department of Public Works property located at 680 Peverly Hill Road. This land will be used to fulfill several objectives of planning initiatives outlined in the City’s 2010 Comprehensive Recreational Needs Study, and the update of this study in 2016. Those objectives include the installation of multiple multi-use playing fields and associated amenities.  The project received planning board approval on October 17, 2019.  The first phase of the field project is currently under construction, to be ready in early summer 2021. This phase includes a 360’ X 225’ multi-purpose synthetic turf playing field, lighting, parking, landscaping, and associated drainage and utilities.

The City Council in May 2018 voted to authorize the City Manager to move forward with the plan to create the multi-field recreation facility and drop plans to build a new field on the “stump dump” site off Route 33. In July 2018, the City Council voted unanimously to bond up to $3.4 million for the project in addition to the approximately $1.6 million that the Council had previously set aside for a single-use synthetic field at the Route 33 site.

In addition to the playing field, the first phase of the project includes the construction of an innovative regional storm water treatment system, consisting of two types of wetland treatment systems to treat the storm water runoff originating from the West Road industrial area.  This system improves the water quality of drainage to Sagamore Creek.  Pre- and post-construction testing will help determine the effectiveness of these treatment systems and provide interpretive educational information for the public.

Future phases of improvements on the site include a second multi-use playing field and associated amenities.

The project has already passed review by NH DES Wetlands Bureau, the Portsmouth Conservation Commission, a Work Session with the Technical Advisory Committee and was approved at the October 17 Planning Board meeting. 

This site will also include accommodations for a snow storage area that will be used by Department of Public Works during winter snow operations.

Future phases of improvements on the site include a third multi-use playing field and associated amenities, as well as a new transfer station for improved efficiencies in the City’s handling of solid waste and recycling operations.    

For more detail on each phase of the plans, click here for Phase I, click here for Phase II and click here for the proposed multi-use bike path and conceptual transfer station layout.