Tracy Ballpark’s future up for debate
by Bob Brownne
Sep 21, 2012 | 6826 views | 42 42 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Ballpark use may change
Players on the Jr. Bulldogs junior varsity team drill under the lights of the Tracy Ballpark on Tuesday, Sept. 18. The city of Tracy is looking into the possibility of selling the ballpark property and using the land for other uses.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
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For 68 years, Tracy Ballpark has been a leading destination for local sports teams.

Now that the city of Tracy is building athletic fields north of town, however, the future of the ballpark includes the possibility that the city could sell the land for residential development.

That was a central theme of a meeting Monday, Sept. 17, at the Tracy Community Center, where city Parks and Community Services Director Rod Buchanan and city-hired consultant John Courtney of RJM Design Group of Sacramento outlined proposals for the land.

Tracy Ballpark comprises 11.27 acres between Tracy Boulevard and Bessie Avenue just south of Grant Line Road,

Buchanan told a group of 12 people, including neighbors and people involved with youth sports, that the concept of selling and developing the park and then recreating the same types of fields at the new Holly Sugar Sports Complex was just an idea for the purpose of gauging public sentiment.

Buchanan said decreased maintenance costs and a more active sports complex for all leagues were among the reasons to consolidate the city’s athletic fields at the Holly Sugar site.

The first 70-acre phase of that 166-acre project is under construction. Youth sports teams could start to build their own fields in early 2013.

“This is an opportunity to move this site up to Holly Sugar so that we can have new fields, hopefully synthetic fields, to be able to have the sports leagues play on the increased capacity,” Buchanan told the group Monday.

Buchanan said the city could keep Tracy Ballpark, which has two baseball diamonds and enough room for soccer fields, as athletic fields. But a projected cost of $4 million, mostly to upgrade irrigation and drainage, makes that option too expensive, he said.

“We don’t have the funding … for a capital improvement project to improve those fields,” Buchanan said after the meeting. “The idea is, if we were to sell that property, (the city could) use that money, to build new fields at Holly Sugar.”



Development a possibility

The city did not identify any particular developers who want to build on the site, nor how much the land would sell for, but Buchanan said developers frequently show interest in the purchase of parkland, including the ballpark property.

Courtney, the consultant, outlined three development scenarios during Monday’s meeting. One would put 97 houses on the 11-acre site; a second would have 125 homes; and the third would have 14 houses along the west side of Bessie Avenue, with a 220-unit apartment complex on the Tracy Boulevard side of the parcel.

Courtney explained that the city is exploring the development potential of the land, because neighbors appear to be unhappy with the athletic fields along Bessie Avenue.

“The city has gotten a lot of complaints from the neighborhood that surrounds this park, in terms of the lighting on the ball field,” Courtney told the group. “Mainly, though, it’s noise and trash, and parking conflicts with people not being able to find a spot in the park, and having the overflow spill over and park in front of the residences. It’s a nuisance that wasn’t foreseen a long time ago when this converted over to parkland.

“Nowadays, if we were planning this park, we would not put an active ball field sports park on residential streets.”

But for 68 years, the park has been one of the city’s central recreation venues.

When Paul Ritter drives past Tracy Ballpark, he’s always happy to see kids playing baseball or soccer or practicing for their youth football games.

For Ritter, owner of a local insurance business, the park represents a family legacy. His grandfather, Carlton Ritter, sold the 11.27 acres to the city of Tracy in 1944 for $10, essentially a donation. With that donation came the understanding that the land would be the home of the city’s ball fields.

“If he were here today, he’d want that to continue,” Ritter said. “My grandfather would be thrilled to see the park and the way it’s being used.”

The grant deed does not specify in writing that the land must remain a park, but Ritter said his grandfather’s understanding with the city was clear enough.

“A handshake meant quite a bit, and a handshake should mean the same thing 70 years later,” he said.

People at Monday’s meeting also endorsed continued use of the land as a park. They split up into two discussion groups, and both recommended improved irrigation, upgrades to the grandstands and bleachers, and more access to parking around the site.

Jonathan Blackwell, the president of Tracy Junior Bulldogs youth football, which practices at the park, said the central location of the park and the visibility it offers the teams are advantages for the leagues that practice and play there.

“It is one of the marketing vehicles for the sports programs,” Blackwell said. “Kids go by there and see that there are other kids of similar age participating, and it gives them encouragement and motivation to try it.”

He also pointed out that much of the parking in the area goes unused because of the one-way configuration of the driveway next to Bessie Avenue — and also because it is too far from the south part of the park, where the Tracy Buccaneers youth football teams practice.

“While the streets are crowded, the parking lots are often half empty,” Blackwell said. “I’ve seen that myself.”

Phillip Treat, who lives on Bessie Avenue a block south of Tracy Ballpark, said the parked cars and traffic connected with youth sports are inconvenient at times, but he expects traffic from a new housing development would be worse.

“This would be every day,” he said. “Tracy Boulevard would not stand it, and neither would Bessie.”

He said the condition of the park, and the city’s insistence that renovation would be too expensive, speak essentially of neglect by the city.

“From what I see, the city of Tracy has not been maintaining the ballpark for this reason, to get rid of it,” he said. “I understand that we have no money, but I’ve been paying taxes since 1976, and I don’t see my tax dollars going to that park.”



Council weighs in

The Tracy City Council gave its perspective at its regular meeting Tuesday, Sept. 18. The council did not vote on the matter, but Mayor Brent Ives told Buchanan that the council should be aware of any recommendations city officials are putting forward.

“Right now, I feel like we don’t have any certainty of what’s proposed,” Ives said.

The mayor added that city staff members should take another month to collect information before asking for public opinion.

“I don’t think it’s appropriate to talk about it until there’s something that the council has been able to vet and be able to say with some certainty that these are the things that might happen,” Ives said. “At this point, you’re stirring up the public about things that may or may not happen.”

Councilman Robert Rickman said any development proposals for the site are premature.

“When we talk to the residents of that area, we need to be more forthcoming about what could be the possibility,” Rickman said. “I know for a fact that one of the things we were looking at, one of the ideas proposed, is apartments. If that’s the case, I know this council member is strongly against that.”

Councilman Michael Maciel supported the proposal to sell the property and use the money to build athletic fields at the Holly Sugar complex, as long as teams would not have to go without fields in the time between closure of Tracy Ballpark and the opening of new fields.

The council also zeroed in on one of the key issues — the distinction that park designers and city staff make between athletic fields, which draw heavy traffic at times, and community parks, where the use is less intense.

Councilman Bob Elliott said the typical resident does not make the same distinction when looking at open green areas in town.

“If that park goes away, then that part of the city is pretty much without a park,” Elliott said.

Rickman was more adamant in his opposition to the possible change in land use.

“When you go talk to neighbors, go tell them that it’s not their park,” he said. “You can call it whatever you want. It is their park. We should give every opportunity to address their concerns.”
Comments
(42)
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fairdeal
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October 02, 2012
People of Tracy: is this the government for the people, by the people? the mayor advised an internal discussion with the city counsel now, but why even considering such the removal of the ball park before asking "the people" for their opinion. The citizens who pay the city salaries through taxes. They have expressed a resound NO!!! Some counselman forgot that they are servants to the citizens who elected them, or are they?
me-here
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September 26, 2012
This morning on Channel 12 news Maciel had his 20 secconds of airtime saying the Council was only "considering" what to do with the ball park.

We know what THAT means....like I am "considering" how to vote for council members.

RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 26, 2012
They should "consider" what to do with it.

Do any of the coaches want to drive back and forth to a field that is in poor shape, when there will be 300 acres available just a mile north of there?

Would coaches at Manteca's field of dreams want to be told to go somewhere elsae and play in the old, unsafe, fields that have ruts and golf divits?
me-here
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September 26, 2012
ok, let the elite go to the new ball park when it is done and leave us the H..l alone here with ours. We can use the Ritter park for a lot of other things. Would be nice if you would "consider" evaporating...
code20
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September 24, 2012
Cont:

Per Councilman Rickman, when he stated in to the

Press article “When we talk to the residents of that area, we need to be more forthcoming about what

could be the possibility.” Be more forthcoming? Now there is a refreshing and novel idea; to be open

and honest with the people of this city! Thank you, Mr. Rickman.

RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
How is he being more "forthcoming"? Does he have information he is not sharing or holding back?

Or did you project your own innuendos into his words?

I think you are projecting your thoughts into his?

Did he really say all that in a one sentence soundbyte?

Maybe he did. I dont know. Did he tell you all that after the meeting?

Did you read his mind? Are you both wearing the same hats?

How do we tune in like that. The rest of us are surely missing out.
code20
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September 24, 2012
Reply to RedHotChilliPeppers: You seem to be very angry at the world and into mental-masturbation by your inept and often out of sync comments. Read the article; my post quoted the statements that were written in the Press. So no, I do not have super powers, or talked with Mr. Rickman; I simply read the article, wrote my commentary and quoted what was reported.
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 25, 2012
code20,

Forgive my questions if they angered you.

When you state that someone wants to be more forthcoming could you explain what more information they/you/whoever would like the people to have? You just wanted the people to know that they have a football park?

If you are simply quoting the article then you are just making noise and we should ignore you?
me-here
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September 26, 2012
I wish red peppers would get a life. Totally out of step with reality. Like, go take a walk in the fresh air...at the ball park for instance.
code20
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September 24, 2012
What I do not understand is, according to the Tracy Press article; “I don’t think it’s appropriate to talkabout it until there’s something that the council has been able to vet and be able to say with some

certainty that these are the things that might happen,” Ives said. “At this point, you’re stirring up the

public about things that may or may not happen.” Ives acts as if this is all news to him. He has no idea or

information about the ball park and its issues. The article also stated, “…city Parks and Community

Services Director Rod Buchanan and city-hired consultant John Courtney of RJM Design Group of

Sacramento outlined proposals for the land.” Are we to believe Buchanan is plotting the sale of the park

and the city hired consultant John Courtney without Ives’ knowledge? No wonder the city is having

financial problems; city employees are running amuck with no accountability. Our mayor has no idea

that the city hired a consultant, spending money we really don’t have. I am sure RJM Design Group is

not doing the study and proposals free of charge. Who gave the go-ahead for the study and proposals?

Yes Mr. Ives, the city is “stirring up the public”.
dcose
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September 25, 2012
"What I do not understand is, according to the Tracy Press article; “I don’t think it’s appropriate to talkabout it until there’s something that the council has been able to vet and be able to say with some"

Stop assuming the Tracy Press' is omnipotent. Do your own research. What you read is only as good as the reporter is willing to invest in. Today, the more important facet is to get it into print.

When ad revenues fall the the level of 1950 does news content matter?
TRACY4LIFE
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September 24, 2012
SAVE TRACY BALL PARK!!!!! Dont let this go without a fight!! This park is used everyday by local youth football and at other times other sports teams. People that live around use the feilds everyday!! Use one of the 4 other pieces of land bought that are not being used to gain money for the other park!! If people are mad about the trash then it should be brought up to the teams that use the feilds to either clean up or find somewhere else to practice.Of course there are other feilds in town but there are other teams there or other people there using them preventing other use. Have the parents use the parking lot most the time its half empty!

There are other options! Stop taking away from the youth of tracy!!!
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
Quick question.

Why do people say, "save the park "? when the fields are bad and dangerous to play on?

And why do people say "save the park" when kids are crossing a four lane freeway to get to the park?

me-here
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September 24, 2012
RedHots....you are always out of step with the rest of us. You can have your HollySugar site. It is a good thing, but not for us that live on the south side of GrantLine. Leave our park the H.ll alone. We play with our dogs, guys practice their golf swings, others just set up chairs in the shade, all in addition to the games played at the park. You have no idea of the value of open grass for the recreation of many of us. LEAVE OUR BALL PARK ALONE. Big kids love that park, too.

RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
me-here,

The reason you think I'm out of step is because you assumed I have an agenda, here. I did suggest repurpose it, but I did not say what for. An entire empty football field is too big for just a dog park with golf divits.

I believe it was a valid question to ask the community. Are apartments the right answer?

Did it get people thinking? Does it come with both a business park and community park -and we need both?
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 25, 2012
me-here

So you have ta drive two extra minutes ta get ta th Holly-Sugar site assumin ya don't hit th lights an stay at th posted speed limits? Oh boo hoo. Th people down on Linne Road have ta drive th same extra distance an yer worried about just those who live south of Grant Line, as if that's th center of town?

Hate ta burst yer bubble but th geographic center of town is somewhare between Tracy Blvd an Sycamore along Schulte.

An if yer practicin yer golf swing thair then yer obviously NOT one of our law abidin citizens because golfin activities are not permitted in any of our parks an dogs must be leashed unless thair at th dog park in El Pascadero.

Don't take my word fer it, call Parks an Community Services an ask em, one of th directors an not a clerk that might not know, if it's OK.

Set up chairs in th shade? An ya say RHCP is "out of step?" Bein that th only trees are next ta Bessie, precisely whair do ya set up these chairs in th shade? Ya probably have better shade in yer own yard than at this park.

Close it. It's not a safe place for competitive sports because of th poor condition of th fields an th cost it would take ta bring em inta suitable condition.
Realintracy
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September 22, 2012
Rickman discloses the truth! Apartments to replace a sports fields. Developers win kids lose. Thanks Mr Rickman , at least we have one person looking out for our kids and the citizens!
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
Realintracy,

How are they "losing" when they have another field right down the street and some new and better fields being built north of there?

Honestly, this was a good location ten years ago when Tracy was nothing but a bait and tackle store nearby.

But now I see kids walking across the street on the concrete divider. A few months back some one was hit by a car walining across Tracy Blvd.

For safety's sake, I would prefer it was repurposed, if we are looking out for the kids.

Touting a polotician is your business, Realintracy, but at least understand what you are talking about. For the children's sake.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 25, 2012
Realintracy

Didn't know th decision ta put apartments thair had been made by Council. Only a suggestion as I recall. Do you have some special inside information ta make it a fact that apartments are slated ta be thair?

Apartments, a business park, housin what ever. Thair are other uses fer this land that at present are better than a dilapidated, run down ball park. This site has outlived it's usefulness for the purpose that was intended it an now it's time ta move on.

A brand new larger facility can be built a mile away an it don't have th same problems as this park.

Do you live in th same house ya were born in or drive th same car ya first drove? Yep, those thangs are nostalgic but odds are ya have outgrown em an moved on. Th same applies ta this park. It was great while it lasted an a lot of memories were born thair. But it's time ta move on as its deficits outweigh its benefits an th money spent on it can be better used ta serve ALL citizens an children of Tracy an not just th select few that happen ta live adjacent ta it.

If ya want a park ta lounge in the shade try Dr. Powers or El Pascedero, both are close by an both have lots more trees.

If ya wanna practice yer golf swing, take it ta a golf course an stay out of our parks as golf don't have a place in our parks.

An if ya wanna walk rover, take him ta th Cora K-9 dog park at El Pascedero or keep him on a leash elsewhare in th city. Also, don't ferget ta pick up after rover when nature calls on him so th rest of us don't have ta step on his landmines.
Realintracy
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September 22, 2012
The ball was gifted to the citizens. The city created a conflict by allowing homes to be built and didn't allow for an increase in traffic. So, in essence, The city sided with the developers and now seeks to placate a small group of people who want to get rid of an asset, to accommodate themselves at the expense of the community as a whole.

Everyone agrees we need more activities for kids and more recreational areas. Maciel wants sell that property to a developer and ship the kids field essentially out of town.

Maciel and Ives want to create another conflict by allowing Serpa to develop homes around the airport. Those folks will ultimately complain and the city will try and shut the airport down

See a trend? Maciel and Ives support developers and we all end up paying for their mistakes. Maciel is arrogant and does not represent the citizens interests. Remember all of his letters to the editor and the attendant double speak. Time for him to go.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 23, 2012
Ya do realize that when th property was gifted ta th city th place was outside th city limits don't ya? An yes, th place belongs ta everyone in th city an th Ritter's have no claim on it or say so in what th City does with it. Yer logic is kind of like a person who gives a lot of money ta a church an then thanks he or she can dictate what th church does in its religious services.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 25, 2012
Since it seems apparent ya didn't know this park was once on th outskirts of town ("essentially out of town", before th strip mall across th street an th only business was Scotty's Bait Shop, way back in 1980, its apparent ta me that ya were either an infant, not yet born or, shutter th thought, moved ta Tracy sometime after 1980 an thus are one of them thair "out of town newcomers" many of those who have lived in Tracy all thair lives frequently complain about.

Yer all worried about Serpa an other developers ta build houses but it seems evident by yer complaint that ya didn't hesitate ta take advantage of those homes by movin here an thus addin ta th logistical problem of supportin th needs of th community called Tracy.

Don't know what attracted ya ta our City but if it's all that bad perhaps it's time fer you ta go. Don't ya see th hypocrisy of complainin about City growth when ya are a part of that problem?
me-here
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September 22, 2012
Well, Maciel, there goes my vote from you. Just one more time you are out of step with the citizens. The ball park does not belong to the City per se. It was a gift from the Ritter family probably before you were born. Complainers .. move, lots of available houses elsewhere in the city. KEEP THE PEOPLE'S BALL PARK. Lights, cars, traffic beats having more density housing in our neighborhood. We have enough crime as it is. I am sick and tired of the Council always looking at the $$$ instead of tradition.
rosa62
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September 22, 2012
I agree me-here. Maciel should learn to stay quiet. Everytime he opens his mouth he reaffirms why I will not vote for him again.

Anyone that knows him knows he doesn't care about what is best for Tracy. He only cares about being the next Mayor of Tracy. I have found him to be a bully who thinks his opinion is all that needs to be heard. I have heard him say publicly that he doesn't need to listen to the voters of Tracy because they elected him and that means they agree with his point of view, which couldn't be farther from the truth.

I voted for him because I thought I could trust him to look out for my best interests, but now I see that he is only concerned about himself.
mommyofthree
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September 22, 2012
FIRST OF ALL, Tracy does NOT need more homes! This town sits back and wonders why the crime has sky rocketed since I was younger. It's because more and more homes were being built which brought in more people... more people brought in more crime. Now they want to take away something from the kids so they can make more money? PATHETIC.

“The idea is, if we were to sell that property, (the city could) use that money, to build new fields at Holly Sugar.” - Yeah the city "could" use that money for that, will they? NO.

I am sure they will find something entirely different to use that money for. It's not about thinking of the kids and making sure they have a place to play and stay out of trouble, It's about how much money can this greedy town make.

Macabre
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September 22, 2012
It would be a sad day to drive down Tracy Blvd and not see the ball fields. I love seeing kids and families at the field. Its an investment into that childs future. If you are a parent or grandparent of an athlete you know the hard work and dedication that goes into that sport. Children come home from school have enough time for homework and chores and then off to practice they go. I am sure the city can figure out a way to keep the fields, selling them is an easy way out. If neighbors are complaining about lights and noise, wait till construction starts. At least you know the kids and their parents are on the field practicing. If apartments go up I am sure you will hear even more complaining about people roaming the streets, cars and homes being vandalized. You will no longer know your neighborhood and who should and should not be there. I do agree with Mr. Blackwell about the parking. It is never utilized and remains empty. I do hope the ballfields stay as I have fond memories as a child watching my dad and his team play softball at the field, then going for pizza across the street. Save our ball field!
pnutgallery
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September 21, 2012
Why are neighbors complaining about the noise and the lights? Maybe they should not have moved near the park, after all, the ballpark has been there for 68 years! Gee...
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 21, 2012
Whare ta start cus no matter what’s said it ain’t gonna set well with everyone? Oh well, that hasn’t stopped me frum commentin in th past so why should it stop me now?

Unload th park an use th funds more intelligently ta develop better facilities fer th City.

First a rebuttal of th negatives.

1. It ain’t a residential park, it’s a community park meaning that it don’t belong ta th residents just around th park but ta everyone in th City.

2. No matter what’s done, people are gonna complain about it. Get use ta it, it comes with th territory called politics.

Cont:
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 21, 2012


3. It’s not th only park near by whair kids can play. Doctor Powers park is 1,138 feet away an across th street frum th middle school, Monte Vista, that services a part of that residential community. Thair is also another park, with diamonds, just ta th west of Monte Vista called Southwest Park used by th Boys an Girls club that’s even closer; about 1,000 feet away. Finally thairs El Pescadero Park that’s about 1,500 feet an adjacent ta an elementary school, North School that also serves th residential community an also contains a soccer field fer use as well, so th comment from Elliot, “If that park goes away, then that part of the city is pretty much without a park,” is without merit an not true.

4. Th comments by th consultant, “The city has gotten a lot of complaints from the neighborhood that surrounds this park, in terms of the lighting on the ball field,” and, “Mainly, though, it’s noise and trash, and parking conflicts with people not being able to find a spot in the park, and having the overflow spill over and park in front of the residences. It’s a nuisance that wasn’t foreseen a long time ago when this converted over to parkland,” is however very accurate. When th lights went up, th local residents complained. When th stands were upgraded, th local residents complained. When th cedar trees along Tracy Blvd were cut down ta increase visibility ta cut down on crime, th local residents complained. When th fields were last refurbished, th local residents complained. When thair was a proposal ta build a city swimming pool thair, th local citizens complained. When th local residents complained about th two way traffic inta th parking lot, whair people would short cut frum Bessie ta Tracy Blvd, th city made it one way and, th local complained. When th concession stand was modernized, th local residents complained. Any common denominator here consarnin this ball park? Yep, no matter what th city does th local residents are gonna complain.

5. More traffic in th area? Don’t see that either cause if ya wanna avoid th lights an traffic on Tracy Blvd ya use Bessie instead. Question, how much “additional traffic” does th apartment facility on Tracy Blvd. between Kavanagh an Cardoza add ta that residential community? Not much as they all have thair own parkin an don’t come in an out all at th same time an have bright lights burnin at night most of th time.

6. Any documentation that would verify th “handshake” agreement with Carlton Ritter allegedly made 70 years ago is true or is it just a fond remembrance of one of his grandchildren. Land donations with use stipulations were made more than 70 years ago in many places and have withstood th tests of legal scrutiny. Seein nothing in th grant deed ta indicate a Ball Park in perpetuity I don’t see any legal entanglements thair. Nothin lasts fer ever an a small two field ball park that use ta be on th outskirts of town an now lays virtually in th north center of town has outgrown its usefulness for th purpose for which it was originally donated. Also, not seein anything in th grant deed ta indicate any such stipulation that it remains a ball park in perpetuity, th original owner and his immediate family no longer have any say so about what th city does with this property as they gave up that right when Carlton Ritter made th donation an thus offloaded a tax burden from his family and gave it ta th City of Tracy ta deal with.

7. Advertisement fer children that might wanna play? Thair isn’t enough advertisement out thair already? Where can ya drive through Tracy an not see this sort of activity all over town?

RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
If you dont want to be forthcoming about safety that is your choice, code20. It came up in the meeting. In the article. You heard only what you wanted to hear.
code20
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September 24, 2012
Reply to RedHotChilliPeppers. You seem to be looking for a debate with your “What if’s.” The subject matter here is the ball park, I am not going to reply to your continued what if… regarding traffic safety.
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
code20,

I think there is a red light where they can cross the street at McDonalds.

Most of the people doing south of Grantline are crossing the median because their parents parked across the street. And unfortyunately, some of the parents did the very same thing.

How are you going to teach traffic safety if the parents unteach it, in the middle of a public Boulevard?

The same thing is going to happen this Halloween, at the Cape Cod homes. The parents drive from miles away to walk across Tracy Blvd, without a crossing guard.

Should the city provide a crossing guard for rule breakers?
code20
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September 24, 2012
Yes, RedHotChilliPeppers, that is an issue, but the park is not the cause of that problem. It the lack of safety being taught to young people from their parents and in schools. Do you believe going up busy Tracy Boulevard, crossing Gantline, busy on and off ramps of I-205 is safer? Regardless, of where the ball park is now or in the future, traffic safety needs to be taught and reinforced with our young.
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
I don't know what happened back then, but I do know that, in the present time, young people are crossing the road (four lanes) without using the crosswalks.
code20
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September 24, 2012
Reply to Ornley_Gumfudgen. You know what “assume” means? One more time, you are missing the

point; we are not talking about “selling.” Carlton Ritter did not sell the property he deeded it to the city

and the people of Tracy. The $10 was only a token payment. Thus, your analogy of the purchase and

sell of my home or car is moot.

As for the “handshake agreement;” I had meet Carlton Ritter, been very good friends with the late Pete

Ritter and have known Paul Ritter all my life. Sir, I can assure you if they said they had a handshake

agreement then I believe them. You are on the edge of being rude and disrespectful to a family that has

done so much for this community and asked for so little.

You have had your fifteen minutes of fame with your ramblings. Stop embarrassing yourself; get all the

facts about the history of the ball park, the homes around the park and how business was conducted

and who were the people involved in Tracy eighty years ago.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 24, 2012
Code20

Really?

Are ya th original owner of th house ya live in? How about yer car? Assumin yer not, does th original owner have any claim on what ya eventually decide ta do with yer house or car?

All yer goin on is some guy that comes up an claims thairs a "handshake agreement" an all of a sudden ya believe it.

If this was so important ta Carlton, why didn't he "get it in writing" an thus ensure thair would be no misunderstandin? Donations of property with property use stipulations have been done fer over a century here in th States an th reason is because while a handshake can be bindin in a contractual arrangement it's virtually impossible ta prove unless it's written.

Don't worry yerself on my motives, if we entered inta a contract you can be certain that all of th little details of th transaction would be written an understood before th transaction took place.

Why? Because it eliminates problems an protects me as well as you. Ya might not trust in my handshake but I guarantee you trust yours. That's why contracts are written an stipulations in th contracts are made.

Th Ritter's ALLEGE this handshake agreement, whair is th proof it was made? Take thair word?
code20
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September 23, 2012
In response to Ornley_Gumfudgen, I read your point – counter-point post; it was rather a difficult read. Regardless, apparently you missed the point. Obviously the family desires no special recognition, as for the past 68 years virtually no one knew the name of the person that granted the city the property. Their only concern is that the park continues to be used for the purpose for which it was granted to the city; for the enjoyment of the families and children of Tracy. Your belief that a hand shack is not a valid agreement is very disturbing; I would not want to do business with you… I would be too warred what you were doing with the other hand. It seems the city of Tracy is taking lessons in integrity, morals and ethics from you; a very sad day is upon us.
Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 21, 2012
Now th benefits ta sellin off th park.

1. No more traffic surges an parkin problems along Bessie as parents drop off thair kids ta play an hang around ta watch em.

2. No more noise related ta th park.

3. No more traffic cutting through th parkin lot an leavin th Taco Bell trash all over th place, not that Taco Bell don’t do it’s best ta prevent that frum happenin.

4. No more lights lightin up th neighborhood at night.

5. No more crime activities in that park at night, like drivin yer car or truck across th wet fields spinnin donuts or stealin th sprinklers out of th ground just fer fun.

6. Badly needed money that can be used ta develop new an better facilities that don’t have as many negative impacts on th local an extended residential communities on land already owned by th City an dedicated fer that particular type of use.

7. No more high cost of maintenance dollars bein poured down an empty well ta maintain outdated infrastructures that are too costly ta remove an replace.

8. Th creation of a new, much larger ball park facility that ain’t plagued by th problems of th current facility an designed fer a specific use that won’t be encroached on by residential communities as th land is not suitable fer residential development usin fundin that ain’t a tax burden on th citizens of Tracy as th profit derived by th sale of land is rolled back inta a public facility whair ya get much more bang fer yer dollar spent. It’s called good land an finance management, somethang every large land owner, if he’s got an ounce of common sense, does in order ta be successful.

Finally, if ya wanna memorialize th noble gesture that facilitated th creation of th current Ball Park, name th new facility The Carlton Ritter Memorial Ball Park an dedicate it ta all th children, past, present an future of th City of Tracy. Now that is somethang that Carlton would probably be proud of.

Note: If people didn’t have a vision of growth then th City of Tracy would still have a population base down in th low thousands an 90% of those who make up th city taday, along with all of th infrastructure, business and, of course, profits, wouldn’t be livin here taday. While that might make 10% of th community happy I’m of th notion that th remaining 90% wouldn’t be happy about it at all. Times change an so does th usage of land. Nothin is permanent. Don’t believe me? How does Tracy High School look compared ta what it looked like in 1980 when it was th only High School in town? Thangs change or they just die.

Ornley_Gumfudgen
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September 25, 2012
code20

Th only reason that ya have difficulty understandin me is fer th fact ya already have made up yer mind an anythang counter ta what ya have already thought is summarily rejected.

Frum readin yer comments it seems ya have th problem of what I call "selective understanding."

If it don't agree with what ya are already thankin ya reject it without consideration.
adjkp
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September 21, 2012
The city is already lacking baseball diamonds for the older players who play on 90' base paths so shutting down these fields would be a disservice to all of the players in the city who need these fields.

Traffic is also a legitimate concern with the accidents that happen frequently at Tracy and Grant Line plus all of the near misses from vehicles cutting across traffic from the Save Mart shopping center.

We don't need more homes in this part of town, let the neighbors have their park.
littlej95
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September 22, 2012
I want the ball park to stay put we have lost so many chances for family recreation already. Tracy needs more things for youth to stay out of trouble and find positive role models. we have plenty of properties that are boarded up. Develop these before we offer up our ball park.
RedHotChilliPeppers
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September 24, 2012
Unfortunately, positive role models are fewer and further apart in professional atheletes today.

If the issue is little or nothing to do, then that is the fault of their parents for not getting them involved in activities. I do not think we have lost opportunities, unless you mean school cuts? Many parents would prefer to let their children play video games than cart them off to a ballgame.

Which opportunities were lost? School cuts? To the baseball teams? Where are the cuts?

To theirthe credit, the schools are actually sharing baseball fields with leagues outside the schools.


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