Jasper High School's new football field is ready for play.It's down to finishing touches at Ki-Ro Gambrell Field. In roughly three months the football field has been transformed from an uneven, …
Jasper High School's new football field is ready for play.
It's down to finishing touches at Ki-Ro Gambrell Field. In roughly three months the football field has been transformed from an uneven, water-saturated surface to a pristine synthetic playing surface of NFL quality.
In fact, Russ Russell of Warner's Athletic Construction (the company that completed the field project) told Jasper City Board of Education members at Tuesday's regular meeting that the NFL Players Association will be coming to do third-party testing on the shock pad installed as part of the turf project.
When the Jasper City Board of Education approved the just over $922,700 project to turf the field, they opted to have the shock pad included in the project as a safety measure for players.
"It's basically the driver of where they're trying to get to with synthetic turf in the NFL — that diameter, that thickness shock pad," Russell said. "Your shock pad will actually hold up to concerts, monster truck pulls and things like that."
Russell said some fencing needs to be finished around the field, along with other minor details.
"Y'all have got a great surface. We're really proud of it," he said.
Years of pipe erosion underneath the football field caused damage to the playing surface and made it increasingly more difficult and dangerous for play.
The new playing surface is expected to last around a decade.
The board of education has also approved a turf project for Jasper High School's baseball field, located near the football field. Play at the baseball field was drastically impacted last season due to standing water, which forced the team to go elsewhere for some games.
Work on the baseball field will occur in the coming months.
In other business, the school board:
• approved a change order for Ki-Ro Gambrell Field to purchase a conduit, which will allow for a possible upgrade to the field's scoreboard.
• approved a property purchase of six acres from RGS Holdings. School board member Scott Thornley abstained.
The amount of the purchase was not mentioned during the meeting.
The property is located just behind Jasper High School.
Superintendent Dr. Ann Jackson said the property will be beneficial for the school system to have for potential future use.
• approved the state raise of 4 percent for education employees.