If Lincoln decides to build a Community Center, that Center is expected to be on the Hartwell Campus, adjoining the Lincoln Public Schools. There are several reasons for this determination, but it is worth highlighting two of them here:
First, there is a set of practical reasons, having to do with the inclusion of the Parks & Recreation Department (PRD) in the Community Center. It is much more efficient to build a Center that houses both the PRD and the Lincoln Council on Aging & Human Services, because almost every space in the shared building would be a shared space. And because it is very important for the PRD to remain close to the Lincoln Schools, so that the schoolchildren have easy access to the PRD after-school programming, it makes sense to locate the Community Center where there is space on the school campus.
Second, the Community Center is expected to be at Hartwell because that is the clearly stated preference of the residents of Lincoln. For instance, at the State of the Town Meeting on November 15, 2014, 350 residents expressed their preferences for a Community Center site, with a very large majority choosing the Hartwell site, among five options. The Community Center Study Committee therefore concluded:
The overwhelmingly favored choice for a location by Lincoln residents is at the Hartwell complex, where it would help to anchor an entire “community campus” consisting of the Community Center, the Lincoln Public Schools, the Town playgrounds and playing fields, and the Codman Pool.
Public feedback on the preferred site for the Community Center (State of the Town, November, 2014)
We welcome all input and questions from town residents, and will make every effort to solicit, hear, and address the priorities, values and concerns of Lincoln residents concerning a new Community Center.