Olvey Field renovation project
• Changing the position of Olvey Field and the layout of the surrounding stadium
• Demolishing old buildings on-site
• Constructing new restrooms, concessions stands, ticket booths and visitor locker rooms
• Adding parking and sidewalk connections from Mills Street to the new stadium
• Purchasing new bleachers for the home side
• Relocating current visitors’ bleachers to the new field
• Construction of a new field house, practice field and parking between the new field house and Mills Street
• Laying some of the required infrastructure for the upcoming phase
After great discussion and input from football coaches, school leaders and even concessions stand operators, the phase-two plans for the Olvey Field renovations are complete.
The Liberty County Board of Education approved the plans pending modifications during Tuesday’s work session, and school officials met with the project architects from Altman+Barrett Architects on Friday to finalize the modifications.
Early this week, the architects will submit final designs to the board, and the project will go out to contractor bids soon, according to Deputy Superintendent Cheryl Conley.
During the work session, architect Walter Altman presented designs for phase two that include changing the position of Olvey Field and the layout of the surrounding stadium, demolishing old buildings on-site and constructing new restrooms, concessions stands, ticket booths and visitor locker rooms.
When drafting the designs, the architects sought input from representatives at both high schools and took cues from features of Liberty County High School’s Donell Woods Stadium, Altman said.
"The field houses are not identical, but they were designed to meet the specific needs for each team," Conley explained. "I believe that we have to provide equity for all students regardless of whether it is curriculum, facilities (or) athletics."
The phase also will include the addition of parking and sidewalk connections from Mills Street to the new stadium, purchasing new bleachers for the home side and relocating current visitors’ bleachers to the new field.
Board member Carol Guyett, a longtime member of the Harvey Overton Bradwell Tiger Football Booster Club, expressed concern about how the plans as presented would affect storage and the flow of traffic in the two concession stands.
"I was told that the concessions were going to be talked to, because I think the band needs input," she said. "The flow of that building is not going to be very good, and when you’ve got 10 or 15 people working in a space … it creates chaos, and I know because I’ve been doing it every week."
After much discussion, the board approved the plans pending modification to the auxiliary structures.
On Friday, Bradwell Principal Scott Carrier and Tiger Band Booster Club President Malinda Derington met with Guyett, Conley and the district’s director of facilities and maintenance, Rodger Osbourne, to discuss the best arrangement of the concession stands.
Architect Keith Barrett redesigned the interiors to their specifications with input from Travis Petitjean and Altman. The team plans to begin work once the football season ends in order to meet a target completion date in advance of the 2012 football season.
While the officials were on-site, they also walked through the field house, which still is under construction even though it was targeted to have opened already. Crews are wrapping up the labor, and the team should be able to occupy the building in time for its Oct. 14 homecoming game, the architects said.
In addition to approving the field’s work, the board also approved renovations to the BoE site that would reroute bus and parent pickup lines to the Pre-K Center, create additional parking and extend sidewalk access from the BoE site to Olvey Field.
Phase one of the Olvey Field project included construction of a new field house, practice field and parking between the new field house and Mills Street, as well as laying some of the required infrastructure for the upcoming phase, Conley said. To date, the board has paid $1,275,153 to the contractor to complete the first phase of the work.
The board will know more about the cost of phase two and the BoE site modifications after receiving bids, Conley said.