Work will soon be underway to replace the 11-year-old field turf at Jim Brown Stadium. The current field is at a point where certain sections will not meet the recommended safety ratings during a test completed in the fall of 2018, in accordance with Ohio High School Athletic Association and The Motz Companies quality assurance protocols.
Most companies that install turf guarantee the surfaces for eight years, Scott Wake Athletic Director said. “We are happy that we got 11 years out of our turf, especially considering how heavily the field is used. Varsity, junior varsity, freshman, middle school and youth football teams have all used the field, as have the school's soccer and band programs. The district has also rented out the turf to several other local soccer programs, which created a revenue that will be used for some of the replacement cost.”
“They have really done an outstanding job taking care of the field,” said Tyce Ruppert, Field Consultant for The Motz Group. “While synthetic turf can greatly reduce maintenance, it cannot eliminate it. The Goshen Local Schools District is a great example of how doing the proper maintenance can extend the field's life cycle. The district has been consistent with grooming the field, which provided longevity and reliability for the field that the community relies on.”
Before the new turf is installed, the district facilities committee and district administration decided to add a protective pad thought to reduce the risk of concussions for athletes and lengthen the useful life of the field.
The padded layer is approximately one-half inch thick, said Scott Wake, Athletic Director. Before deciding to install the padding, district officials visited several new turf fields around the greater Cincinnati area, which have similar padding on its fields.
"Research shows that it reduces the risk of concussions if an athlete was to hit their head on the turf," Wake said. "We think it’s a pretty important safety upgrade to give our athletes moving forward."
The project is being funded is several ways, all of which will not cost district taxpayers any additional dollars. The overall cost of the project is $396,000, including $69,200 for the protective padding. The project is set to begin by the end of November and will be completed before spring athletic programs begin, weather permitting.
If anyone is interested in acquiring some of the old turf please contact Todd Shinkle to discuss the possible process including haul away requirements and timelines. The district has plans to keep some of the turf for future projects on campus, including possible batting cages and baseball and softball bullpen projects.