Patrons of the Norris School District donated over quarter of a million dollars in the fall fundraising campaign for the Titans Facilities Fund targeting the "Turf Club" phase. The Norris Board of Education had earlier established the $250K target, pledging in summer 2014 that district resources would be used in 2015 to cover the remainder of the cost if this donation threshold was achieved. As a result, construction will move forward on the artificial turf field for Titans Stadium and a track resurfacing project in the spring and summer, 2015.
The district is deeply grateful to the dozens of donors, both individual and organizational, who gave to this project to benefit Norris students. Formal donor recognition will occur with the dedication of the project upon completion.
The Board of Education will select its design firm at the January meeting to assist in oversight and steering of the project including procuring bids for the various phases of work to occur to install the field and resurface the track. The projected completion date for this ambitious construction project is August, 2015.
Why we need it:
Many school districts across Nebraska and throughout the nation have installed artificial turf in their stadiums in order to:
*Increase the consistency of playability on the surface – it is the same under any condition, everywhere on the field.
*Increase the durability and usability of the surface by teams at every level, for all applicable sports. Currently, a high-volume of youth sports from the community adds to the wear and tear on the field over the course of the fall and spring seasons. Artificial turf provides for a much higher volume of use rate without wear and tear on the surface. Natural grass is not as durable!
*The field is a classroom space: it will be used for marching band practices when artificial turf is installed – currently, the band can only get onto the field one time per week because of the toll it takes and damage it inflicts on the natural grass.. This also includes physical education classes, weather – permitting, which will be able to use the field surface – when turfed – for PE activities and courses such as team sports.
* Decrease ongoing maintenance costs incurred by attempting to maintain a natural grass field.
*Manage over time a cost – neutral artificial turf facility through reduced personnel and materials fees that are inherently associated with natural grass.
*Norris is falling behind in comparability with cohort schools. In recent years, rival districts from Aurora to Beatrice to Pius have installed artificial turf. Half of the games Norris played last year were on artificial turf fields.
In recent years, a critical mass of Class B and even smaller – sized districts than Norris have installed artificial turf on their football and soccer fields.
How much it will cost:
The projected cost of the artificial turf project is 550 K. This includes the dirt work, site prep, drainage system, and installation of the artificial turf surface itself.
Public use of the Norris Titans stadium is currently and will remain very high – this includes youth football teams such as the screaming Eagles and the Junior Titans. The first priority for use will remain Norris – school – affiliated and sponsored activities.