At Tuesday’s Windham Town Council meeting, the council voted to purchase the land owned by Portland Water District (PWD) at Soccer Drive in Windham for $80,000.
“It’s an opportunity for us to preserve a long time community investment. One hundred thousand kids have gone through there playing soccer,” said Windham town manager Tony Plante.
For over 20 years, the town has leased the land from the PWD, agreeing to pay the approximately $600 a year taxes plus $1 for the development of playing fields on the 19 acres. The fields have been groomed and taken care of by Windham Youth Soccer Association (WYSA).
“PWD didn’t want to hold on to it anymore,” said Plante. They had it appraised and offered it to Windham at the appraised price of $105,000. The town had a desk appraisal done and offered $80,000, which was roughly half way between what PWD and the town appraisals were.
Last month the PWD planning committee approved the sale of the property on the condition that it is used for public recreational use.
“It’s a very important asset to the community and the region. The council sees that,” Plante said.
No plans as to the management have been made at this time. “Our focus has been on preserving the asset first. It is another discussion we will have to have. It has to acknowledge the time, effort and money that have gone into the property,” said Plante.
The Windham Town Council approved the purchase at Tuesday night’s meeting.