There is significant cost involved in maintaining the natural grass field at the high school and limited usage – the field is only used for approximately 60 hours each season. This means only a handful of athletes are able to benefit from using the field. This represents severe under-utilization of the facility. An artificial turf field will dramatically increase the utilization, making the field almost always available. It is estimated that the artificial turf field will be used 2,500+ hours per year based on statistics provided by other area high schools.
Artificial turf is a synthetic carpet-like surface consisting of man-made materials that are grass-like in appearance and function. The surface “blades” are interspersed with a soil-like base made of sand or rubber or a combination thereof that provide the stability and uniformity needed. When used on athletic fields, it provides a consistent playing surface built to withstand extended use without down time for recovery.
When artificial turf surfaces were introduced, there were many myths and perceptions about injuries. These perceptions have changed with the knowledge that injuries are usually sport specific and not related to the playing surface whether it be natural or synthetic.
Benefits differ from activity to activity and also depend upon the quality and design specified. In general, synthetic fields are always ready for use. They hold up to frequent use, and require significantly less labor and maintenance expense.
When not in use for school programs, the fields will be available for community use. We anticipate frequent use by the town’s youth programs.
This project is a response to the growing need for an all weather stadium surface that improves and expands facilities for athletic, musical and community activities. This significantly improves the usability for all of our teams and musical performers and builds on our community.
A committee of volunteers has been formed that is comprised of members of the community, leaders of youth sports, and parents of current and past students. The organization is the non-profit Marblehead All-Sports Foundation (MASF), a non profit IRS approved 501(c)(3) organization.
Yes. We have met with both organization and have gained their support. The Superintendent, School Committee, Town Business Manager, and Athletic Director, have helped lead the effort to determine the requirements of the field to ensure that all necessary requirements are addressed in the process.
No, all turf companies guarantee their product for 10+ years regardless of usage. This is one of the great advantages of synthetic turf. It is anticipated that the field can be used nearly year round, as many hours of the day as needed.
The school administration will manage the field and set the priorities. In general, high school activities take precedence, whether it is for athletic or musical events or practices. However, given the capability to use the field throughout the day and into the evening with lights, youth sports and other community activities will have access to the field.
A goal of $1,300,000.00 dollars has been set for the initial project. This amount allows for a worst-case scenario given the uncertainties around required remediation of the underlying structure of the field.
The Steering Committee will work in conjunction with Town officials and the design consultant to select a contractor. We have been advised by Marblehead Town officials that our process is not bound by any state mandated bid requirements.
We will form a project oversight committee comprised of experienced members of the community with relevant backgrounds. This model has worked well for projects like the construction of MHS and Village School.
We expect the project will take around three months. The goal is that no disruption to Marblehead High School Sports will occur.
The youth and adult sports organizations in Marblehead have all committed to providing an annual contribution to the maintenance fund of $10 per member. This will cover the yearly maintenance costs for the field.
That has been tried and failed. The goal of this fund raising effort is to bring needed improvements to the community without additional tax dollars.
The field itself will always be known as Piper Memorial Field. For interested parties, there is an opportunity for naming rights.
Steve Maxwell // firstname.lastname@example.org // 781.990.8685