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Football stadium renovation plans move forward

Posted on Friday, March 6, 2015 at 9:00 am

Lonnie Self, a representative with Tullahoma-based OLG Engineering, Inc., checks the integrity of the supports under the MCHS football stadium during an inspection in mid-January. In February, school officials said they planned to refurbish the home side of the stadium, while completely replacing the visitors’ side. (MCN Photo by Robert Holman)

Lonnie Self, a representative with Tullahoma-based OLG Engineering, Inc., checks the integrity of the supports under the MCHS football stadium during an inspection in mid-January. In February, school officials said they planned to refurbish the home side of the stadium, while completely replacing the visitors’ side. (MCN Photo by Robert Holman)

LYNCHBURG — Prior to last Monday’s (Feb. 23) Metro Lynchburg Moore County Council meeting, the council’s budget committee met in regular session. Among the topics discussed were the proposed improvements at the Moore County High School campus, specifically an update on the school’s football stadium, which was condemned in November.

Moore County Director of Schools Chad Moorehead attended the meeting and updated the budget committee on the progress the school system has made in its effort to make some type of feasible arrangement prior to the start of the 2015 football season.

Moorehead said the school system intended to completely replace the bleachers on the visitors side and repair the bleachers on the home side of the stadium. He added that the school system would not be asking the county for any additional money to make the stadium fixes, which if were not in place could potentially put the high school football team on the road for its 10 regular season games and the middle school team on the road for all eight of its games.

“We are thinking it’s going to cost in the neighborhood of $250,000,” said Moorehead. “For various reasons our school fund balance was built up last year. That was in part because our (tax revenue) came in higher than we budgeted and in part to some unpaid leave from several (faculty members) last year also. That worked to our favor and that helps out.”

After the stadium renovation, there should be seating for approximately 1,300. What the $250,000 will not cover however, are new restrooms, which are just functional at best, or a new concession stand. Both of those items were covered in the school system’s proposed $17 million overall of the entire campus.

“We are going to completely replace the visitors side, probably with seating for about 500,” said Moorehead. “The home side, we are basically going to fix all the deficiencies within report. That includes fixing some drainage issues under the stadium and fixing the railings.

“We hope to be able to add some paint, spruce it up and give it a (facelift). Our engineers said we could spend that money and get 20 to 25 more years of life out of that structure.”

The project is planned to be finished before the first football game of 2015. The school system put out announcements for bids on Monday, both for the demolition of the visitors’ side and the refurbishment of the home side.

Read more in the March 5 print edition of The Moore County News. Click here to subscribe.

—By ROBERT HOLMAN, Editor & Publisher (mcnpub@lcs.net)

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