Bulldog stadium gets an upgrade


Madana TIgyer and Alyssa Mancuso

For the last five years, the Big Spring High School Stadium bathrooms have been in a constant state of deterioration and decay. As repairs have repeatedly been made, the cost to keep these bathrooms functioning has begun to steadily rise to an unreasonable price, and when the installation of port-a-potties became a necessary step to keep these facilities running, the Board of School Directors knew that action needed to be taken. As the idea for constructing new bathrooms began to form, it quickly evolved into the concept of building an entirely new stadium entrance. And when Big Spring teamed up with ECI Construction to begin the creation of these blueprints, they knew they were taking a step in the right direction. As the idea of these new changes got out, students and the community alike began to question whether these renovations had been put into place solely to benefit one particular sport: football. Superintendent Richard Fry quickly put these rumors to rest as he said, “This is not a specific sport project. Every year the largest event the District hosts is our commencement ceremony for seniors. The current facilities at the stadium could not support that event so the Board had to address that need.”

According to Rick Gilliam, Director of Building and Grounds, this multipurpose stadium will now feature new team locker rooms, a band room, storage rooms for sport teams, the band’s equipment, maintenance equipment, and new restrooms featuring the addition of handicapped restroom facilities and family restrooms. The 2.2 million dollar upgrade will also include new ticket booths and concession stands in order to better cater to consumer needs. Jay Hockenbroch said, “The concession stands will become more modernized and spacious for the athletic and band boosters. They will also help needs of people that come to games and meets.” Construction is scheduled to start on April 1 and finish August 19, in time for the first home football game.

Concerns, however, have been voiced by the Track & Field team as to whether the field will be usable during their upcoming season despite the construction. Gilliam said, “During this time, the track team will still be able to use the field and graduation will be taking place at the stadium as well, weather permitting.” In addition, questions have arisen as to if an all-weather track would be included in said renovations. Hockenbroch answered, “The all-weather track is still scheduled to be put in, however it will not be at the stadium due to the space around the football field not being level. The cost it would take to remedy this would therefore be too high, and the entire football field would have to be redone as well in order to even everything out due to a two foot difference in the elevation of the areas.” A new track will instead be built in front of the high school where the gym classes currently run the mile, at an estimated $700,000. The public’s reaction to these plans have seemed to be generally positive, as the design was displayed at the last home football game of the season. As for now, students and the public alike will be anxiously awaiting the upcoming date of these renovations, as the scheduled construction time quickly approaches.