FARMINGTON — Concerns with plans for Walton’s Mill Pond Park were shared with Selectmen July 26.

“What I am really concerned about number one is you have got four parking spaces designated at the roadside before you get into the park,” resident Nancy Porter said. The road curve there is considered by road engineers to be hard to navigate and undesirable, she noted. There will be blind spots in both directions, she stated.

Porter noted the speed limit changes five times between School Street and Twin Bridges. She said when she asked she was told the parking couldn’t be changed. Someone still in the road or opening their door could be hit, she noted. “That is a horrible corner, I have lived there 39 years,” she added.

Selectman Chair Matthew Smith said the whole town voted on the park changes.

“I have seen the plans, I know what you are talking about,” Selectman Joshua Bell said. “I drive that road every day, it is 35 miles per hour there. It is close but they are not going to be right on the road.”

“It won’t make any difference if someone has lost control of their car,” Porter said. “Why can’t you go back and just say this is dangerous?”


“Part of the problem is a question of voluntary compliance,” Police Chief Kenneth Charles stated. “The problem is when people are exceeding the speed limit, driving outside of the conditions as well. That is what you are describing.”

If people are riding according to the conditions and the posted speed limits then it should be fine, he added.

Charles said the same thing is seen on other town roads. He stated he will increase patrols there.

Porter then asked about vehicle access to the pavilion and used caterers as an example.

Parks and Recreation Director Matthew Foster said there is a 15-foot right of way vehicles may use.

Noise was another concern raised by Porter. She asked if there was a noise ordinance specific for that park and was told “No”.


Foster said in 11 years he has only had one noise complaint – for Hippach Field.

Other issues Porter spoke of were abutters gaining land as a result of the dam removal, abutters not wanting people on their property, kayak and canoe access to Temple Stream, the desire for sidewalks, and decreasing the speed limit.

Bell said he had no issue with lowering the speed limit but the state sets the limits. The park is changing, won’t be the same, he added.

Foster said the park will be more visible. “It is going to be raised up quite a bit so you don’t have that big dip to go down in,” he noted. “You should be able to see it quite a bit.”

The parallel parking spots on the road have been redesigned to push people further into the woods making it safer, farther from the corner, he added.

Foster said while canoe and kayak access will be available he doesn’t know how much canoeing and kayaking will be possible.


A large clump of sumac was another Porter concern. She asked if it was going to take over the dam area or if it would be removed.

“The sumacs have been there for a long time,” Foster said. Planting native species is planned, he noted.

“The park is going to be maintained,” Town Manager Christian Waller stated. “Part of that maintenance will be maintaining the tree line.”

“You are just assuming on a lot of this stuff,” Bell said.

When she asked about charging for use of the park, Porter was told it would be free – the same as other town parks which require prior approval for use.

Smith thanked Porter for her concerns, the time she had spent.

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