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Trojan Stadium work on track

September 19, 2005|by DON AINES

chambersburg@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Where the home bleachers of Trojan Stadium once stood is now bare ground but, if all goes according to schedule, a new and improved stadium costing between $4.4 million and $5.5 million will be ready for the 2006 football season.

The school board Wednesday voted unanimously to authorize architects from the Mechanicsburg, Pa., architectural firm of Crabtree, Rohrbaugh and Associates to prepare specifications and advertise bids for renovations to the stadium, which will remain the home field for the high school football, soccer and track teams even after a new high school is built at a yet-to-be-determined site.

The stadium stands were closed in March after a wooden floorboard broke during a track meet. The track and field continued to be used for events last spring, including graduation, but the seats remained empty. Spectators for sporting events were relegated to the sidelines and families at the graduation sat in rented chairs on the field.

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This football season, however, the Trojans have played their home games at Shippensburg (Pa.) University while the home grandstands were demolished and the wooden plank seats of the visitors' side bleachers were replaced with aluminum seats, floorboards and risers, and were made handicapped-accessible. Portable bleachers for a total of 1,200 have been erected in the end zones.

The Trojans are scheduled to play two home games at Trojan Stadium; the first is homecoming on Friday, Oct. 14. The work to get the stadium ready for this season is costing the district approximately $600,000.

There was little debate on the future of the stadium last week, although some board members unsuccessfully argued the $50,000 price tag for moving two home-side light poles was expendable.

The new home grandstands will have seating for 4,500, according to the specifications, bringing total seating to more than 8,000 with the portable bleachers. The estimate on the home stands was between $1 million and $1.25 million.

When the Trojans take the field next season, the specifications call for them to play on artificial turf at an estimated cost of $709,000 to $816,000.

The six-lane track will be replaced with an eight-lane surface, each lane being 42 inches wide, according to the plan, which put the cost estimates between $252,000 and $308,000.

"I think the track program deserves an eight-lane track for as well as they've done in the past," board member Fred Rice said Sunday.

New lighting will cost another $200,000 to $300,000, according to the specifications.

New press boxes, restrooms, concession stands, ticket booths, fencing and utilities are also in the specifications, although VIP seating was eliminated. Architect Paul Taylor recommended that proposals for an expanded parking area and a main entrance gateway to the stadium be included as alternates in the bidding.

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