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The Hampshire Hills athletic facility in Milford, NH, is similar to the dome that will be constructed for the Crystal Athletic Training Facility. Photo from ASATI.

At its meeting on September 15, the Planning Board gave conditional approval to an application by 4Square, LLC for a new development at 414 Alfred Rd., near the intersection with Grammar Rd. Crystal Athletic Training Facility will include a 125’ x 150’ dome for indoor training, a Little League sized baseball field, and a high school sized baseball field with an outfield that can double as a multi-purpose field for other sports. The existing building on the property (formerly home of Mimi’s Nails) will become the office and one residential unit.

The dome will have a concrete foundation and wall. The white, translucent roof will be made of insulated fabric from Belgium, with a bias-harness cable net system for strength and safety. It inflates in a few hours and uses air pressure to stay up. The dome can withstand high winds and heavy snow, and will have heat and air conditioning for year-round use. ASATI, the company that produces the dome, has used the technology to build facilities for hundreds of clients, including practice domes for several NFL teams.

Construction will begin as soon as the project receives approval from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, which is anticipated within a few weeks. The first phase of construction will be the Little League field and the dome, which will provide a full high school baseball diamond, six-hitting/pitching tunnels, and open turf space for other activities such as lacrosse, soccer and football.

The dome is expected to open in December for use by Coastal Riptide, a youth baseball training organization currently based in Wells. The facility will be available for rent to other organizations beginning in January.

The second phase of construction will include the other outdoor fields and a separate building to house a concession stand and restrooms.

The maximum occupancy of the entire facility is capped at 120 people, including players, staff and spectators. The fields are for daylight use only, with no nighttime illumination. The main entrance will be from Alfred Rd., with emergency access from Grammar Rd.

Plan of the Crystal Athletic Training Facility. The large rectangle just below the center is the dome.
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