By Ernie Smothers firstname.lastname@example.org
HUNTINGDON (June 6) — Following weeks of weather-induced delays, Barsto Construction of Huntingdon commenced earthwork excavation and grading of the playing surface of Paul Ward Stadium’s playing field in anticipation of the placing of a multi-purpose, synthetic playing field surface by Austin, Texas-based sports and stadium field construction specialist Hella Construction.
During an interview with The Banner, Huntingdon Special School District Director of Schools Pat Dillahunty said, “Excavation work at Paul Ward Stadium in underway and we are on track to meet the August 1 completion date for synthetic surface implementation.”
She said, “Playing field demolition, earthwork and concrete is being donated by local construction companies and not added to the overall contract cost. Barsto Construction is moving a lot of dirt, and Hellas Construction of Texas is onsite and ready to initiate the grading and installation of the playing surface. There is still a lot of work to do, but things are going well.”
Dillahunty said the school system has received $600,000 in secured donations and $115,000 in proposed pledges with more funding expected.
She said, “I am thankful for the generous support of our community. Now that the dream of a synthetic playing surface at Paul Ward Stadium is becoming reality, excitement is definitely building.”
During the May 18 meeting of the Huntingdon Special School District Board of Education, board members, at the recommendation of Director of Schools Pat Dillahunty, unanimously approved the $748,405 complete bid submitted by Hellas Construction of Austin, Texas to construct a multi-use, synthetic turf playing surface and four-lane running track at Paul Ward Stadium.
Dillahunty informed board members prior to approval that Hellas bid includes the installation of concrete, field base, synthetic turf, asphalt track base and additional asphalt as needed, track surface and logos.
HSSD Chairman Dr. Lee Carter commended local businesses and individuals for their generosity in funding the new synthetic field surface.
He said, “As thankful as we are for the donations received so far, we want to encourage a spirit of perpetual donating so that money will be available when the time comes to resurface the field and pay for future school-related projects. I am proud of the financial support provided by our community to achieve this most-worthwhile endeavor. The new synthetic field will provide various usage opportunities for the school and the entire community.”