Seymour school board gets ball rolling on soccer fields

After years of talk about putting soccer fields in at Seymour High School, school officials are ready to kick the project into high gear.

The Seymour Community Schools Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved specifications for the $2 million project and permission to seek bids for construction.

The project will go out for public bids next month and be awarded in July. This timetable would make the project subject to House Enrolled Act 1090, which goes into effect July 1. That act repeals Indiana’s common construction wage law, which requires a wage scale on public construction projects valued at more than $350,000.

“The wage scale usually adds approximately 20 percent to the labor costs for the project,” said Jamie Lake, project manager with Kovert Hawkins. “So this will be a savings for the school corporation.”

When completed, the work will transform the area to the west of the school between the softball and baseball diamonds into a soccer complex, complete with a turf-covered game field and a grass practice field, Lake said.

Seymour would be one of a few Indiana high schools with an artificial playing surface dedicated to soccer, he added. The fields also will be used by the high school’s marching band for practice and for physical education classes.

Other features of the project include construction of a press box building with restrooms, concessions and storage, bleacher seating, sports lighting, additional parking areas and stormwater retention and drainage improvements.

Currently, the school uses C.B. Hess Memorial Soccer Field at Freeman Field Sports Complex for boys and girls games. That field has drainage issues and presents a liability for the school because students must travel to play there, officials said.

“This will create a soccer complex on the school campus and permanent home for the school’s soccer programs,” Lake said.

The project is being financed with a $2 million bond the school issued late last year.

Construction will begin in August, and the fields will be ready for use by the 2016-17 season, Lake said.

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January Rutherford is a reporter for The (Seymour) Tribune. She can be reached at jrutherford@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.