City of Somerville
Massachusetts

Agenda Item
202726
Work Completed
Apr 13, 2017 7:00 PM

That the Director of SPCD report to this Board the City’s position on installing artificial turf fields with crumb rubber infill while the US EPA studies the potential health and environmental hazards of such infill, and explain why the City doesn't use organic infill.

Information

Department:Board of AldermenSponsors:Ward Five Alderman Mark Niedergang
Category:OrderPurposes:Order

Official Text

That the Executive Director of the Office of Strategic Planning and Community Development (Transportation and Infrastructure) report to this Board on the City’s position on installing artificial turf fields with crumb rubber infill while the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency conducts a study on the potential health and environmental hazards of crumb rubber infill, and explain why it is not City policy to use organic material for infill in artificial turf fields.

 

Meeting History

Jan 26, 2017 7:00 PM Video Board of Aldermen Regular Meeting

Alderman Niedergang questioned the environmental and health impacts of the crumb rubber infill turf. He does not feel that the City should install any more crumb rubber infill turf fields until more studies from the US EPA are done. There are organic alternatives.

RESULT:APPROVED
Feb 8, 2017 7:00 PM  Finance Committee Committee of the Whole

This item was referred to the Special Committee on Open Space, Environment and Energy for discussion.

RESULT:REFERRED FOR DISCUSSION
Feb 14, 2017 7:00 PM Video Board of Aldermen Regular Meeting
RESULT:REFERRED FOR DISCUSSION
Mar 20, 2017 6:30 PM  Open Space, Environment and Energy Committee Committee Meeting

The members were told that crumb rubber is the industry standard and the most tested. Studies do not say it is dangerous. Members discussed hours of play was discussed, the carbon footprint of each product and other cities using crumb rubber. Alderman Niedergang is uncomfortable with the use of crumb rubber and doesn’t like the idea of installing new fields with the material. He wants to know the cost comparisons, but is more concerned with health issues rather than cost. Alderman Davis said that he prefers grass but understands the turf issue, adding that he can’t find conclusive evidence that crumb rubber is dangerous. Alderman Niedergang said this issue can be raised again when there is a field to fund.

RESULT:WORK COMPLETED
Mar 23, 2017 7:00 PM Video Board of Aldermen Regular Meeting
RESULT:LAID ON THE TABLE
Apr 13, 2017 7:00 PM Video Board of Aldermen Regular Meeting
RESULT:WORK COMPLETED