Ballpark figure:$1.5 million

By on December 5, 2013

Costs for synthetic turf at War Memorial Field would be about about $1.5 million, according to preliminary estimates. That doesn’t include anonymous $1 million pledge for the project.

The cost to install synthetic turf at War Memorial Field would be about about $1.5 million, according to preliminary estimates.

That’s what Ephrata School Superintendent Brian Troop will report tomorrow at a meeting with the War Memorial Field Association.

Troop is attending the meeting at the request of Andrew Dittrick, WMA president, who has expressed concern about the project’s costs.

But, if Troop’s numbers hold up, the project could cost the district only $500,000 since an anonymous donor last month pledged $1 million for the installation of the synthetic turf.

Troop reported to the school board Monday that he received two non-binding estimates of $1.8 million and $1.3 million for installation.

“These are unofficial prices,” Troop said on Tuesday. “If the board decides it’s a go, then we’ll get hard numbers.”

The War Memorial Association has keen interest in the proposal. WMA has a unique 99-year agreement that leases the field to the district.

The deal also provides that WMA members maintain and prepare the field for Ephrata ‘s baseball and football games and other events.

Dittrick has favored replacing the sod on both the football and baseball fields at War Memorial Field for less than $70,000.

But he is “anxious” to hear Troop’s comments to the WMA board on Thursday.

Troop said the lower $1.3 million estimate figure comes from a person familiar with synthetic turf manufacturing, while the $1.8 million is an estimate submitted from a person involved in turf installation projects.

“That averages out to about $1.5 million, which is what we expect the cost to be,” Troop said.

The anonymous $1 million pledge for the project comes as the district finds itself in a favorable financial position.

Ephrata School Board President Tim Stayer last month said the board would consider whether artificial turf was a viable option financially.

Stayer beamed Monday over the clean financial audit the district received during the board meeting.

“This may a be a little premature to consider but based on how good the (audit) is and how our fund balances are, might we even consider a low or zero tax increase next year?”

Correction

There was an error in last week’s edition. The artificial turf issue was not removed from Ephrata School Board’s Nov. 18 agenda.

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One Comment

  1. Dave weaver

    December 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    this is not a good thing to do

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