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Crews begin working on high school sports field

GLENWOOD SPRINGS — A project to resurface the track at Stubler Memorial Field is under way as part of a cyclical maintenance project that takes place about once every 10 years.

The project, which in essence replaces the track surface at the Glenwood Springs High School stadium, began earlier this week. Also in the works is construction of stadium lights on the east end of the complex, replacing the lights which have illuminated the football fields for at least four decades.

“That track is just starting to show wear,” Glenwood Springs High School Athletic Director Craig Denney said. “The surface is beginning to harden, and there’s some spots on it where the kids feel like they’re running on concrete.”

This summer’s project serves as the second part of a two-year project to replace some of the outdated material at Stubler, which hosts the school’s football, soccer, lacrosse and track and field events. Last summer, the press box, grandstands and stadium lights behind the grandstands were replaced. The project was completed in early September.

The estimated time of completion of this summer’s project is early August, prior to the first official day of school sports practice on Aug. 12, according to assistant superintendent of business services Shannon Pelland.

Total cost for the project to replace the track, which also includes replacement of the rubberized track at Basalt High School, is $316,000. That does not include the cost for the construction of the lights on the east end of the football field, which is roughly $50,000, Pelland said.

The funds to pay for the project come from the state’s allocation of tax funds to public schools, which is based on enrollment. Additions in enrollment add more money’s the school’s reserve fund, and the opposite is true during an enrollment drop.

Pelland said the grandstands and the west stadium lights were put in last year with the anticipation of laying the new track surface this summer. The west grandstands sit on the inside of the track at Stubler Memorial Field. School officials felt safer completing the grandstand project first.

“This is not just about a safety issue for the kids,” Pelland said. “This was also a ‘protecting your investment’ issue.”

Work crews have begun taking off the track, but will not tear up the underlying asphalt. Crews will work to seal cracks in the asphalt, however, and will replace the old track with a 2-inch thick rubberized surface.

Rubberized track surfaces usually have a lifespan of 10 years. Pelland estimated it had been 11 to 12 years since the track had been resurfaced.

The old wooden light poles, like the grandstands, were also located inside the track. The new light poles have steel foundations and will be set behind the east grandstands.

“Someone told me once that those light poles were put up sometime in the 1960s, and someone else told me the ’70s,” Pelland said. “Either way, that’s old. They needed to be replaced.”


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