Jeannette approves turf at McKee Stadium
By: Bill Beckner Jr.
Tuesday, April 9, 2019 | 2:02 PM
Jeannette’s longtime vision of having artificial turf at McKee Stadium is no longer a pipe dream.
Consider it as good as done.
The school board voted Monday by a unanimous, 8-0 vote to approve the installation of turf, and a new track, at the decades-long home of the Jayhawks.
McKee Stadium has had a natural grass playing surface since it opened in 1937. The track has long needed improvements.
The district assures this is not just a football-driven venture.
“The thing about it is, it is by no means just a football field,” Jeannette football coach Roy Hall said. “It will be for boys and girls soccer, the band and other sports, and recreational things like for the elementary students.”
Jeannette Superintendent Matt Jones said the turf project will cost $763,518.
“We are hopeful that the inclusion of some local school districts in the immediate area that are exploring similar projects will translate to significant savings for Jeannette,” Jones said.
Jones said there will be a pre-construction meeting next Monday to lay out a construction schedule. He said the project will begin no later than June 1 so the field can be ready for this fall sports season.
The installation is not expected to take longer than 60 days and track renovations, which will come at the tail end of the turf work, take about two weeks to complete.
“The McKee field renovation is part a greater district initiative to offer Jeannette students expanded opportunities in the classroom and extracurricular activities,” Jones said. “The district is in the midst of long-term planning and capital projects that support academics, athletics and the arts. We must continue to provide quality facilities and programming to our students to match the growth and development of the City of Jeannette.
“As the city continues to reinvent and rejuvenate itself, it is imperative the district keep pace as a primary partner in that transformation.”
Eleven of 18 schools in Westmoreland County have turf multipurpose fields. Teams that still play on grass are Burrell, Derry, Jeannette, Latrobe, Greensburg Central Catholic, Monessen and Ligonier Valley.
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .