Following the completion of the East Boston Little League season last year, the City of Boston began construction on the $4.7 million project to rehab Noyes Park in Orient Heights, one of the neighborhood’s largest public open spaces that hosts numerous sporting events.
Construction crews were busy all year removing Noyes’s old fencing, stone walls and other park features to make way for the city’s ambitious park restoration project.
Last Wednesday, during his Neighborhood Coffee Hour, Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Parks and Recreation Department officially cut the ribbon on the new and improved Noyes Park.
“Noyes Park has undergone major reconstruction and we are proud to share the results of the hard work that went into this project with the East Boston community,” said Mayor Walsh. “The new and improved Noyes Park will be a place that children and families will enjoy for many years to come, and I want to thank everyone involved for bringing this great new park to life.”
The ribbon cutting also marked the naming of the park’s baseball diamonds after the late Anthony ‘Tony’ Capozzi.
Capozzi, who worked for the city’s Parks Department, served East Boston Little League for more than 35 years as a coach, umpire, groundskeeper, concessioners, or any other task that he had to for the children of Eastie. In many ways Capozzi, who died in 2009, was “East Boston Little League” and for over three decades Noyes Park was his second home.
He was also a past member of Girls Softball Board of Directors, coached Pop Warner Football as well as East Boston Youth Basketball.
Capozzi’s family was on hand to celebrate the naming of the baseball diamonds and helped the Mayor cut the ribbon to the park.
Following a series of community meetings over several months, residents and the city agreed upon a final design for Noyes Park.
The plan the city came up with reconfigured the largest of the three baseball diamonds and shifted home base over towards the basketball courts behind the Marty Pino Center. This shift allows enough room to add a fenced in regulation Little League field in other unused space at Noyes Park.
The Little League Field on Saratoga Street was converted into a multi-use, AstroTurf field for both softball and soccer.
Funded with a $4.7 million investment from Mayor Walsh’s Capital Plan, including a $400,000 Parkland Acquisitions and Renovations for Communities (PARC) grant and a $100,000 grant from Youth Lead the Change, site improvements include new LED sports lighting, a synthetic soccer/softball field, a fenced and irrigated baseball field with batting/pitching cage and covered player’s benches, a fenced and irrigated Little League field with scoreboard and covered player’s benches, a playground for ages 5 to 12 and 2 to 5 with rubber safety surfacing, a rope climber and dish swing, a 2 to 5 play structure and tot swings, splash pad, two basketball courts, a walking loop and exercise station, new trees, and rain gardens.
Noyes Playground is one of the largest playgrounds in East Boston at 8.22 acres. The park has traditionally served baseball, softball, Little League, soccer, and as a playground. The comprehensive renovation approach allowed the Parks Department design team to look at ways to separate uses while diversifying and providing additional uses within the park. This project was done in coordination with a tidal gate being installed by the Boston Water and Sewer Commission at Constitution Beach to stop tidal flooding from entering the site along Saratoga Street.