YARMOUTH — Construction of a new artificial turf field at Yarmouth High School, replacing one installed in 2001, is due to start June 10.
The project is funded by a $1.5 million bond, which voters approved last November. The field, used by high school sports teams and the community, “reached the end of its useful life and had settled over time,” according to a 2012 annual report by former Superintendent of Schools Judy Paolucci.
The turf carpet will be replaced, while an underlying pad will be added, field drainage will be improved and repaired, and the existing tract will be re-sprayed and re-striped, according to Paolucci’s report. She noted that new ball netting and a new game management ramp and box would also be added.
The work is due to be complete in mid-August.
“We wanted to wait until after graduation (to start), but we also wanted to make sure that we had enough time for the project to be complete before the fall sports start,” Yarmouth High Athletic Director Susan Robbins said last month. “Pretty tight time table.”
Funds are being set aside each year for the eventual replacement of the field, which is due to last about 12 years, Robbins said.
Speaking to the benefits of artificial turf, she noted, “you can play (on it) in any weather; it’s certainly … a great project community project to have because it’s being used so much all the time.”
One reason the current field needs to be replaced is because it has been used so much. “Basically, if it’s not snow-covered, it’s being used,” Robbins said. “And that’s been really great for our community.”
The field also gives the school a competitive edge in hosting sports activities, “because we can play in anything,” she said. “So if we’re having some rain, while other schools may be canceling, all of our kids know we’re going to play.”
Yarmouth High School was one of the first public schools in Maine to have an artificial turf field, Robbins said.
“That was a big source of pride for everybody,” she said, adding that the replacement project has been about three years in the making.
Replacement of Yarmouth High School’s artificial turf field will begin June 10.