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Turf field


Talk about Turf: 

The focus of this page is to present  information in regards to the pros and cons of the loss of the natural green space and the potential effects artificial turf may have on the community - good or bad.  


​Sustainable Milton is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate the public, advocating that informed citizens make thoughtful decisions with high standards of sustainability in mind.

In this case, there is no simple answer, however, we have compiled resources to share.  The more you read, the more you will know.

Letter Shared with the Conservation Committee November 21, 2023.


ISSUE: Ongoing discussions have occurred  in Milton in recent years about the state of town  sports fields and the need for improvements. 

CONTEXT: Milton Town Meeting approved a multi-million dollar proposal this past spring for the reconstruction of the Lower Gile Field. The reconstruction approved  would replaceme the current natural grass with an artificial (plastic) turf field, along with fencing, lights, and spectator stands. In addition to the Gile project, there is discussion of installing additional turf fields in other Milton locations . For example, Milton Soccer re-proposed Flatley Field (Neponset Parkway/Brush Hill Rd.) to Milton Parks & Rec. Board at its July 21 meeting.

CONTROVERSY: Many questions have been raised about the pros and cons of artificial turf and the environmental impacts it  may have on existing  open green space, abutting downslope neighborhoods, surrounding Pine Brook areas, as well as safety or injury risks to  players and coaches , in particular, exposure to chemicals such as Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (aka PFAS “forever chemicals”).


Here are some links used to review the risks associated with replacing natural grass fields with artificial turf. Please feel free to share any information that you may deem resourceful in light of this topic. 


Town of Milton Website: Lower Gile Field Proposal

Not all NFL player agree with Artificial turf bans

All NFL fields need to be natural grass, Bleacher Report.

A case against turf, Portsmouth, NH example.

More games or grass fields in MA?

National Research for Health Center: Children and Athletes at Play on Toxic Turf and Playgrounds

Debate for whether artificial turf is better for soccer?

Letter to the Conservation Commission from NEPRWA: April 2023


Wayland passes Artificial Turf Reforendum 9/4/2022

Sierra club letter supporting grass fields in Milton

Milton Access Video Recording of Select Board Meeting August 10 2022

Sierra Club Information Sheet on Artificial Turf

Proposal for Reconstruction of Lower Gile Field

Brockfill Webpage: Materials used on Proposed Field

Grass for Lower Gile Field Facebook Page

Martha's Vineyard Times Article: Dispute of Turf Fields Continues

2017 Washington Post Article on Artificial Turf and Health Risks

EPA 2019 Study of Tire Crumble Characterization

New Jersey Work Council Turf Fact Sheet

The Conversation Article, Written by Professor of Environmental Health, School of Public Health @ George State University

NY Department of Public Health: Information About Crumb-Rubber Infilled Synthetic Turf Athletic Fields (great links included!)

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