The stadiums at Arroyo Grande and Nipomo high schools will soon undergo a transformation thanks to the support of their local communities.
These old stadiums aren’t just visually in need of upgrades, these renovations will also address safety issues within the structures.
More than 15 years ago, Arroyo Grande High School Athletic Director Stephen Field played football on the same grass where he now watches aspiring young athletes give it their all every Friday night.
“The stadium and field are still the same as when I was here and way before that as well,” Field said.
Arroyo Grande High School was built in the 1950s and although the exact age of this field is unknown, Lucia Mar Unified School District Superintendent Andy Stenson says it is old.
“The stadium is very old but the current visitor side and press box are in a state of disrepair. At this point, it’s a safety hazard,” Stenson said. “In the case with Nipomo, their visitors’ side is in need of upgrades as well.”
With the passage of Measure I, funds will support major improvements to stadiums at both high schools. The exact cost has not yet been determined, but Stenson did share estimates.
For bleachers and a press box, costs would run $672,600 at AG and $580,000 at Nipomo. Combined architecture design comes in at half a million dollars and all-weather tracks, which will allow the schools to finally host track meets, costs about $850,000 at each school.
“I think what this reflects is our community, our community and school,” Field said. “Everyone’s been involved in this.”
Stenson says the improvements will not only benefit the hundreds of student-athletes who will sprint, tackle and score touchdowns here, but the community footing the bill.
“We’ll allow people to come use these after hours in terms of local joggers,” Stenson pledged.
“Whether it’s gym or playing a sport on the field, you have 100 percent of kids benefiting someway, somehow,” Field said.
The designs are still going through state approval so exact costs will be released at a later date.
The school hopes to begin building by late February with plans to complete the two upgrades by 2019 graduation.