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Trojan Stadium begins $6.8 million facelift

March 21, 2006|by DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - A front-end loader shoved the roof off a concession stand Monday afternoon as demolition began on the $6.8 million reconstruction of Trojan Stadium at Chambersburg Area Senior High School.

With the students on break Monday it was "mobilization day" for the job, Buildings and Grounds Supervisor Richard Bender said. Contractors brought in temporary security fences and construction trailers, and began to tear down things at the stadium.

The stadium will remain a construction site for the rest of the school year and through the summer before it is scheduled to reopen for the fall soccer and football seasons. Demolition and excavation, which make up most of the project, will continue into the summer, said Bender, who had to shoo a couple of children off the field Monday afternoon.

"We estimate they'll take out 360 truckloads of dirt" from the field area, Bender said. The project calls for about 2 feet of earth to be removed to put in place a stormwater drainage system, which will be topped by an artificial turf playing surface.

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As is the case with the stormwater system, much of the work for the stadium will be underground, Bender said. That includes sewer, water, gas and electric lines, and footers for concession stands and bleachers, he said.

While demolition and construction are ongoing, the high school's administration parking area will be used for construction equipment, supplies and trailers, he said. That parking area will be doubled in size as part of the renovations, he said.

Last month, the school board received and awarded bids on the stadium, with the general construction contract going to Waynesboro Construction for $4.8 million. Ellsworth Electric of Pa. Inc. was the lone electrical bidder at $1.1 million and two other smaller contracts totaling about $215,000 were awarded.

In December, the estimate for the project was lower, between $4.2 million and $5.2 million, Business Manager Rick Vensel said at the time the contracts were awarded. That figure did not include architectural and permit fees, land development costs and other expenses that bring the total to about $6.8 million, he said.

The district last year set aside about $5.8 million for the stadium project from a $38 million bond issue for construction projects, Vensel said in February.

When the contracts were awarded, the board directed the architects to negotiate changes with the contractors to trim the costs. Bender said those changes in the project will be discussed at a special meeting of the board Wednesday night.

Bender said Monday he had not seen the list of possible cuts, but no major items are being removed from the project. In addition to the artificial turf, there will be new home bleachers, concession stands, public restrooms, lighting, pressboxes and ticket booths, along with an eight-lane track and expanded parking, according to the architectural plans.

"There's some money to be cut out of the project, but that's the board's decision," he said.

The stadium was closed a year ago this month because of safety concerns about the bleachers. The home grandstand was removed and the visitors side repaired at a cost of about $600,000 in time to allow two home football games to be played there last fall.

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