Upgrades at Harlan Independent’s athletic complex nearing completion

Published 9:40 am Wednesday, April 24, 2024

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The Harlan Independent School District is currently seeing new construction and upgrades at the Joe Gilley Athletic Complex, with the work expected to be completed in time for the next school year.

Superintendent C.D. Morton provided some details on the ongoing projects during an interview following a recent Harlan Independent School Board meeting.

“We’re building a field house for our athletic programs at the football field,” Morton said. “That field house will include a 40-person locker room, offices, a weight room, showers, the whole nine yards.”

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According to Morton, progress on the field house is going well.

“They’re on schedule,” Morton said. “The foundation is in; they’ve got the walls up. I think within the next two or three weeks we’ll see the roof start to take shape, and then they’ll be doing primarily finish work.”

In addition to the field house, a new eight lane running track is planned along with new grass turf for the football field.

“Previously, our football field was a little narrow in the corners,” Morton said. “So, we’re rectifying that problem. We’ve got the drainage under control with a new irrigation system, it’s coming along well too…They are currently putting the topsoil down, the irrigation system is in, we’ve got the electrical work done, so we feel like that’s right on schedule as well. We’re having to make some modifications to the existing bleachers because of the encroachment of the track on the walking area, so we approved a modification that will allow us to do that without any problem. We’re going to add handrails to the bleacher system.”

The facility will feature full track and field event capabilities.

“Track and field will have the full complement of events, with low jump, high jump, shot put, discus, pole vaulting, everything you could need to host track and field,” Morton said.

In addition to the projects at the sports complex, upgrades are also planned at the district’s central office facility.

“We’re just about a month or so away from starting the renovation of our central office building,” Morton said. “We’re getting new heating and cooling and new window systems.”

The completion date for the Joe Gilley Athletic Complex project is expected to be June, 10.