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School board discusses possible stadium updates | News, Sports, Jobs


TR PHOTO BY SUSANNA MEYER From left are School Board President Sean Heitmann, Superintendent Theron Schutte and Board Member Leah Stanley. Schutte outlined details of a project that would focus on updates to the Marshalltown High School stadium at the board meeting scheduled for Monday night.

TIMES-REPUBLICAN

Improvements to the stadium at Marshalltown High School may be underway as Superintendent Theron Schutte discussed possible updates with school board members at the regular meeting scheduled for Monday evening.

One of the key aspects of the project would be the construction of a tornado-safe team room in the stadium’s west area, which would contain changing rooms for home and visiting teams to use. In addition to these spaces, new concession stands, new public restrooms, a training room and a referees’ locker room would also be part of the construction.

“It’s kind of a multi-purpose hall, but its main purpose would be to provide something that we don’t currently have at the stadium, which are team halls for teams to meet before, after or during half-time. game times,” Schutte said.

Because there is no existing structure, Schutte said teams use the Rotunda locker room to change and then drive to the stadium. In the event of bad weather or other delays during games, visiting teams go to an “undersized storage room” which has been refitted as a team room, and the home team goes to a building in in front of the softball field.

“None of these situations are ideal for football, certainly, and probably for football as well,” Schutte said.

MCSD was given the opportunity to submit a grant application for the construction of the tornado safety room, and it would cover 95% of the structure’s eligible costs, which Schutte said was equivalent to approximately $3.4 million over a $3.8 million project.

Thanks to a recent federal legislative change and the infrastructure plan proposed by President Joe Biden, Schutte said the federal government would pay 90% of the remaining eligible costs, then the state would pay 10%, leaving the MCSD only responsible for the expenses. deemed ineligible for coverage.

Of the $3.8 million project, Schutte estimated that about $400,000 would be considered ineligible, although he said construction of the structure would depend on whether or not the requested grant was awarded.

Although they applied for the grant before the end of the 2021-2022 school year, due to legislative changes and the possible approval of the infrastructure bill, the approval or denial of the grant application has been delayed. However, the process has recently moved forward.

Schutte said he sent the requested additional information to the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management about two weeks ago and then submitted it to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The district hopes to get an update on the status of the grant within the next 30 to 90 days.

The construction of the team hall building is just one part of the larger MHS stadium project, and Schutte said they also hoped to convert the sports field to FieldTurf. This conversion would require the field to be wider than it is now and require a different track configuration.

Schutte also said there was a “desperate need” to update the home bleachers and press area. The bleachers are from the original 1960s construction, and Schutte said with the movement of the foundation over the years “you can kind of wave without waving.”

In addition to these updates, Schutte also hoped to be able to refurbish the visitor bleachers and also get a new scoreboard.

These updates would be primarily funded by the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) funds, which are specifically for school infrastructure.

“What we will look to do if we have the ability to move forward with this project is to prioritize absolute needs and wants if we have the ability to do so, so there will likely be parts of it will be a replacement offer, so the whole project won’t be dependent on our ability to fund a digital dashboard, which could be done later if we needed it,” Schutte said.

Other small improvements are also highlighted as part of the project, including a new digital timing system for the track, a storage structure under the press box, new fencing and several other updates in the same vein. .

Schutte said the MHS and Anson Elementary Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning projects were tendered, allowing them to avoid spending SAVE dollars, and on top of that, they were also able to allocate funding. federal COVID to the MHS HVAC project. Due to these changes, Schutte expected to be able to fund the stadium improvements using SAVE funds without issue if all goes according to plan.

The discussion at Monday evening’s board meeting was purely for informational purposes, but a public hearing on the proposed use of SAVE revenue for the project was scheduled for Tuesday. Oct. 4 at 5 p.m. at the next board meeting.

In other cases counsel:

• Heard an update from the student council representatives.

• Approval of 2022-2023 staff lane changes.

• Approved a depositary resolution.

• Approved Board Policy 704.4 Donations, Grants and Bequests.

• Heard an update from the Director of Communications, Adam Sodders.

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Contact Susanna Meyer at 641-753-6611 or

smeyer@timesrepublican.com.



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