The partial redevelopment and preservation of the 19.2 acres would be far more ambitious than other recent municipal undertakings, such as the reconstruction of Tanner Street, which took too long and frustrated many.
And a grassroots group called Haddonfield United has raised questions about the price and necessity of the purchase.
Intended to provide "landlocked" Haddonfield Memorial High with breathing room, and to give the borough additional open space and perhaps a site for affordable housing, the plan is so short on specifics that it barely exists.
Haddonfield United has been effective despite its funding disadvantage against One Haddonfield, a civic group that hopes Tuesday's referendum will pass. The latter's war chest contains $3,500 from Bancroft, a venerable school for the disabled that has considered leaving town for more than a decade.
Borough officials have talked about buying Bancroft for at least as long, and supporters of the purchase say now is the time to take advantage of an opportunity that should not be missed.
I believe they're right.
In a town this small (11,500 people in less than 4 square miles), a decision of this magnitude has lasting consequences.
Imagine if the Haddonfield public library had not been built at the picturesque, yet hopelessly cramped, North Haddon Avenue site in 1917, but on a spot that could accommodate expansion.
Or imagine if residents had gone along with PATCO's plan to bisect the heart of town with an elevated track.
Think of the borough without Evans Pond, Pennypacker and Mountwell Parks and the rest of the greenbelt Camden County constructed in the early 20th century.
For that matter, imagine Haddonfield if Margaret Bancroft, a pioneer of education for children with developmental disabilities, had opened her school somewhere else in 1883. Chances are the institution's woodsy bluff overlooking the Cooper River would have been developed decades ago.
Now Haddonfield has a chance to acquire this beautiful and, yes, strategic piece of ground at a community gateway adjacent to the park system.
If development is minimal and wise - visions of artificial-turf fields and additional parking spaces do not constitute a plan - the Bancroft site could be a jewel, providing incalculable dividends for years to come.
Were I a borough resident, I'd vote yes Tuesday.
But should the majority say no, Borough Hall needs to listen.
Contact Kevin Riordan
at 856-779-3845 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow on Twitter @inqkriordan. Read the Metro columnists' blog, "Blinq," at www.phillynews.com/blinq.