Renovation of Elgin's Memorial Field nearing completion
The $4.6 million Memorial Field makeover is nearing completion.
The renovation project on the grounds of Elgin High School that began in late March recently marked a milestone with the installation of the new turf field.
Still, there is more work to be done by Chicago-based commercial construction contractor F.H. Paschen, S.N. Nielsen.
"We're roughly three weeks away," Elgin Athletic Director Paul Pennington said Tuesday. "We have some other things that still need to be put in like the press box and the visitors' bleachers. I saw them bringing those materials in this morning.
"The track is probably one of the biggest things left to do. They'll be doing that over the next couple of weeks. As they go along they'll be putting up the external fencing and taking down the old."
A new polyurethane track will be installed at a cost of $87,000. It replaces a nearly 30-year-old surface.
Pennington said light posts were erected along the road on the facility's east side Tuesday. The main field lights are expected to go up this week.
The field lights -- identical to the directional lights Elgin Area School District U-46 installed at South Elgin High School last summer -- are designed to provide improved lighting for events while reducing light pollution in the neighborhood. The lighting budget was $284,000.
Practices for football and boys soccer are scheduled to begin Monday, Aug. 10 unless the IHSA issues a delay. Memorial Field would likely be available by the end of that week or early the following week, Pennington said.
"We'll see how these next couple of weeks pan out," he said. "But we're not getting any indication (of a delay) because everything is on time, or being delivered or it's already on site. We've been lucky with the weather. It hasn't held them up too much. They've been able to work around whatever camps that were running."
The renovation also includes security cameras, a concrete walkway, a three-ring shot put area and a new discus area located by the tennis courts.
The new turf field is lined for football, soccer and lacrosse.
"It's going to be one of the state-of-the-art facilities in Illinois not just for football, soccer and lacrosse but also track," Pennington said. "It's going to be pretty exciting for our students."
Larkin is scheduled to play the first two football games on the new surface when the Royals host Glenbard East in the season opener on Aug. 28 and Fenton on Sept. 4.
The Elgin football team is slated to make its debut on the new Memorial Field turf on Sept. 11 against Bartlett.