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Board considering artificial turf

By Brandon Evans | Published Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Bulls shall inherit the turf. Artificial turf, that is.

At Monday night’s meeting, Bridgeport School Board members passed around a wooden case containing samples of Matrix Turf. The soft, green, synthetic material used by Hellas Sport Construction has been installed at fields ranging from Southlake Carroll Dragon Stadium to the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.

It’s just one of the options the board is mulling over as they eye the possibility of installing artificial turf on the field at Bull Stadium.

“There are a lot of options,” said Bridgeport athletic director Danny Henson. “We need to look at all the products. I need to go to stadiums that have had it installed for several years and see what the coaches like.”

Henson mentioned Paragon Sport Construction. The Fort Worth-based company installs athletic fields and running tracks.

“Paragon can install any kind of turf,” Henson said. “They’re not their own turf company. So we could get them to install any kind we chose.”

The board asked Henson to bring back a recommendation and someone to talk to the board about installing artificial turf at the March 18 meeting.

Superintendent Eddie Bland said the cost of the turf would range from $750,000 to $800,000. If the board approves installing it, the money would come from the general fund balance. It’s been accounted for in the district’s five-year fund balance plan.

“This is all part of our five-year plan,” Bland said. “We’ve made sure to take care of technology first.”

With the district also considering the addition of soccer to its athletics program, the synthetic turf would help the field sustain the winter use of matches.

If the board approved the turf issue next month, Henson said construction could not begin until after track season ends. If the company hired could install it during the summer, the Bulls would look to take to the synthetic turf by this fall.

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