Stadium Field set for opening

PARKERSBURG-Things are on track for Stadium Field to be open Friday for Parkersburg High School’s football game against Capital, the stadium committee was told Monday evening.

Ryan Taylor, project engineer on the Stadium Field renovation project, said after a walk through the facility Monday morning with the state fire marshal, there were still a few things left to complete, but efforts will be concentrated on getting those done and the fire marshal is expected to inspect the facility again on Friday.

The inspection will be conducted before the fire marshal gives his final approval for the stadium to open and he issues the occupancy permit.

”He gave us the green light pending the items getting corrected that we discussed,” Taylor said. ”The stadium is substantially complete.

”We are putting the seats in and bolting down the handrails. We are painting and cleaning up. We are removing construction debris and getting the place ready for the game on Friday.”

Taylor, who is president of Pickering Associates, said the fire marshal gave them the “thumbs up” on what they were working on and indicating work was progressing the way it should.

”It is very exciting to be in that position,” Taylor said. ”We do have that punchlist and we will have everything done by Friday.”

The only item that might not be completed by Friday is getting the railing up on the ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act) ramp. The aluminum railings have not been fabricated.

Taylor said they will either put in a temporary wooden railing or have the ramp blocked off with other accommodations made for people who would use it. The concrete ramp is complete.

”It will not stop us from opening,” Taylor said. He believed they will have a temporary railing in place by Friday and have it opened.

Items that won’t be in place by Friday are panels that won’t affect the overall construction. They might also have temporary barriers in place.

Work crews have been making good progress over the last few weeks, Taylor said.

”We have been working a lot of overtime,” he said. ”Overall, the contractor has done a good job to get the project done in a timely manner.”

Taylor said crews have been able to get work done a lot quicker than he had initially anticipated.

This has been a community project with donations continuing to arrive on a daily basis. Representatives from the PHS Class of 1967 presented a check for $1,967 and has challenged other classes to come up with an amount equal to their graduation year.

Fundraising will continue in the coming days, weeks, months and years to raise the money needed to completely pay for the project, but officials said they were not under the gun to raise a specific amount this week before the planned opening.

A donor recognition event will not go forward Friday night, but plans are in the works to do something at a game in the near future, officials said.

”We will have a few more days of bolting seats down, putting handrails down and we will be ready to go,” Taylor said. ”Everyone will be in seats, coming and going, on Friday.

”We have had a lot of volunteer labor to get us to where we are,” Taylor said. “There has been a lot of community support on this.”