Haverford Deal Could Save Trees at Villanova Property

The Oakwell Estate in Villanova
Image via Monica Herndon, The Philadelphia Inquirer
The Oakwell Estate in Villanova

A tentative agreement between Haverford Township and Lower Merion School District could reduce the number of trees razed at the historic Oakwell Estate property in Villanova for new athletic fields, writes Oona Goodin-Smith for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Lower Merion wants to build the fields for the new Black Rock Middle School.

The new agreement would allow a baseball and softball field to be built at the Bryn Mawr Polo Field in Haverford Township by spring of 2024.

The school district would pay $275,000 for alterations to the 18-acre site “with a goal of improving community spaces and minimizing neighbors’ exposure to the fields’ use.”

The deal, which still needs final approval by Haverford and Lower Merion School District, wouldn’t prevent field development at the Oakwell property but it could lessen the impact there.

 “You rarely find an opportunity that is truly a win for all parties involved,” said Haverford Township Commissioner Laura Cavender.

November plans at the Oakwell Estate had called for leveling a century-old teahouse, stone fencing and a brick-walled garden complex at Oakwell, as well as remove 462 of the property’s 691 trees. 

Read more about a proposed plan between Haverford and Lower Merion School Districts to build athletic fields at the Bryn Mawr Polo Field in The Philadelphia Inquirer.   

Take an aerial tour of Oakwell, Villanova.

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