The River Forest Park District Board of Commissioners voted 3-1 to approve a request for a 4-foot chain-link fence behind the backstop of Keystone Park’s baseball field at its meeting on April 9, moving on a request made months ago by River Forest Youth Baseball Softball (RFYBS).
Greg White, RFYBS’ president, told the commissioners the fence was a matter of safety and security. The project will cost almost $5,000 in total and the RFYBS agreed to cover half of the cost.
According to the plans submitted to the board, the fence will be built along the sidewalk in the back of the field. The fence itself will cost $4,482, and another $200 will be spent to relocate an electric line. A wooden platform behind the backstop will be removed as well.
According to the staff report, not only is removing the platform necessary to install the fence, but it will improve drainage on the ball field.
In an e-mail sent to the board ahead of the meeting, White wrote that RFYBS coaches wanted to put in the fence to create a clear separation between players and the spectators.
“This creates a safer, more secure environment for players and their equipment,” White wrote. “It also keeps spectators, fans and very little children out of the dugout where they should not be.”
White stated that people use the area to cut through, leave their bikes and generally crowd around, making it hard for anybody to get through.
“I think it’s a pretty small change,” Commissioner Lynn Libera said. “I think it’s a nice offer for [RFYBS] to pay for half of it.”
The board wound up voting 3-1 to accept the request, with Commissioner Cheryl Cargie voting no.