Volunteers can now begin work on building a new baseball field in Paso Robles after the City Council unanimously supported the project at its meeting Tuesday night.
The offer was brought by the Paso Robles Youth Baseball and the Paso Robles Youth Sports Council to have volunteers and licensed contractors build a baseball backstop, on-deck circle and dugout at Sherwood Park off on the city’s east side.
The groups have operated youth games on two fields and one temporary field over the years. The addition would mean a third permanent field off Creston Road for youth baseball.
“Speaking on behalf of coaching, we put a lot of time and effort into these kids and they’re good kids,” coach and resident Tom Seidel said on Tuesday.
“I see kids still out there after 9 at night because we’re trying to share the scheduling.”
The added space is intended to alleviate such scheduling problems.
A new field would also help to get kids wanting to play baseball off the groups’ waiting lists.
The project will be funded entirely by volunteers, with no city funds, according to the proposal. The Youth Sports Council has pledged up to $13,000 in support of the project, estimated at $12,500, according to the proposal, with the baseball group offering to pay any additional costs.
About 550 kids are signed up for youth baseball, organizers said, and families have worked hard to ease scheduling problems in sharing the too-few fields.
“We were overcrowded 12 years ago. It’s not gotten any better,” Youth Sports Council president Steve Serda said before the council Tuesday.
The hope is to get the new field built before the local baseball season begins March 9, organizers said.
Others also support the move, including Paso Robles AYSO Soccer who had a representative speak Tuesday. Residents in the Sherwood Park area, including the park’s tennis groups, were also notified of the proposal and haven’t objected to the project, according to the city.