In baseball, timing is everything.

But as far as some residents of the Mountain Farms subdivision are concerned, the city's timing couldn't have been worse in its decision to build new ball fields adjacent to the city park.The parcel where the fields are planned was acquired by South Jordan in a trade with developers last summer.

But when some Mountain Farms residents bought their homes earlier this year, they were told the vacant land to their south was destined for more housing. Now it appears likely to house a complex of soccer fields and four lighted baseball diamonds.

"I hear the fans that attend those ball games down in the other part of the park, they carry all the way up here, and to have them over the other side of the fence is more than I think I could live with," said Ralph Lundgreen, a retiree who lives in Mountain Farms. "I had no objections when I heard the park was coming in, but my goodness, they should have more sense in planning facilities than to put a ball diamond right next to your house. Certain balls might come right over our fence, to say nothing of the noise."

City officials say the location of the ball fields, a parking lot and the road leading into the park has not been determined, although several proposals have been advanced.

City administrator Glenn Vernon, councilwoman Merlynn Newbold and members of the city's parks committee met with area residents Thursday night.

Mountain Farms resident Marsha Carlson gives the city credit for being receptive but said the neighborhood doesn't have much time because the City Council is set to vote on a park design plan Jan. 3.

"They're trying to work with residents," she said. "But I don't think they planned ahead. This should not have been zoned residential if they knew this was going in. I think they need to take some time and look at this."

Carlson said she canvassed the new 50-lot subdivision Friday afternoon and found that most residents thought the city was planning a "family park" but were unaware a lighted baseball complex was included in the plans.

"We're concerned about what was called a park now turning into a sports complex with major sporting events happening," she said. "We're concerned that our property value will go down.

"I think they need to look at the impact of the traffic and congestion, and the accidents that could happpen just from people trying to exit the park."

Carlson, Lundgreen and Terry Ivie are among the 10 residents who would be most affected. Their homes are on the south side of 10740 South, just west of Redwood Road, and they would have backyard views of the complex.

"From what I understand they'd be about 100 feet back from our fence," Ivie said of the ball fields. "It's a little frustrating. You go out and spend $200,000 on a place and boom, here you go."

Realtor Gaynell Instefjord, who sold Mountain Farms property and now lives in the subdivision, said a residential development had been proposed for the neighboring land at the time Mountain Farms lots went on the market.

"Unfortunately, in our city, when you buy around undeveloped ground, you don't know what's going to happen," she said. "The city can do what they choose to do with it. I don't think the constituents of Mountain Farms have anything they can say about it, unfortunately."

South Jordan Mayor Theron Hutchings said Mountain Farms residents should have known about the city's plans.

"It's been published in our Focus and public hearings have been advertised, so if they didn't get the word, it's because they didn't make any effort to get it," he said. "We find that whenever we want to do something there's always some opposition from some people."

Carlson said she and her husband went to City Hall and asked specifically about the neighboring lot before buying, and were told it would become a family park with open space, along with equestrian and jogging trails.

"There's going to be ball fields there," Councilman Jack Peck confirmed. "Whether it be directly behind their homes or closer to the existing parks is what we've asked the citizens for some input on."