Sierra Club joins lawsuit over athletic fields

The Sierra Club has joined a lawsuit charging the City of San Francisco with failing to comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) in its proposed Beach Chalet athletic fields project.

The City wants to install synthetic turf at the athletic fields and put up light towers for night-time play. The athletic fields are located at the west end of Golden Gate Park.

The complaint alleges that the City:

• Is potentially putting children at risk when they play on the suspect artificial turf;

• Abdicates significant control over the quality and safety of artificial turf to a private association (City Fields Foundation);

• Failed to consider a feasible alternative site outside of Golden Gate Park and a design using a safe, non-toxic artificial turf.

The lawsuit asks the court to order the City to immediately stop the Beach Chalet Soccer Fields Project until a legally-adequate Environmental Impact Report (EIR) is prepared and adopted by the City. An appeal to the California Coastal Commission is also expected in the near future.