Photo: Rock Meadow Conservation Land.
A plan to use town conservation land off upper Concord Avenue to park nearly 1,000 vehicles during an upcoming professional golf tournament at Belmont Country Club in June has been abandoned, according to an email from the town’s conservation agent to a resident.
“At this point in time, the Conservation Commission will not be using Rock Meadow as a parking area for the Constellation golf tournament,” Mary Trudeau, Belmont’s conservation officer, wrote to Jeff Miller today, Tuesday, April 21.
Trudeau did not return a call from the Belmontonian for comment.
According to Belmont Town Administrator David Kale, the PGA decided after reviewing the anticipated traffic coming to and from Belmont and the “complications of the site” on the number of vehicles onto the site, to relocate the majority of the parking to another area nearby.
“The PGA is always looking at alternatives and they found one that suits their needs a little bit better,” said Kale.
It is unknown where the parking will be situated.
The change comes a week after the Belmont Conservation Commission narrowly approved a conditional agreement to allow the Professional Golf Association Tour (PGA) to use approximately 11 acres of Rock Meadow Conservation Land for up to 1,000 parking spaces to support crowds attending the Constellation Senior Players Championship, one of the five “major” tournaments of the PGA’s Champions Tour for players over 50 years old.
The tournament will take place from Thursday, June 11 to Sunday, June 14 at the Belmont Country Club.
During the debate whether to approve the conditional agreement – any fees to use the meadow would be placed in the ConCom’s Victory Garden reserve account to pay for the biannual mowing – Trudeau said the town forces her “to go begging” for grants and other funding to maintain the land as Belmont does not provide monies to the ConCom.
After news of the agreement was made public, several residents questioned the vote to place upwards of 1,000 cars in three locations on the meadow.
The PGA’s decision was welcomed news to those who felt the number of vehicles could lead to pollution and damage to nearby wetlands.
“For both public policy and environmental reasons, I’m pleased that the decision appears to have been reversed. Now I’d like to see the town add a budget item for meadow maintenance, and I also encourage all users to donate to the Friends of Rock Meadow,” Miller, a Precinct 1 Town Meeting member, told the Belmontonian.