Track Construction to Begin Soon
Donations Still Being Accepted
With the school track season winding down, preparations have already begun for installation of the new all-weather track. Fisher Tracks from Boone, Iowa is constructing the 8-lane track and will begin work mid-June. The Marcus Hounsom Relays had to be cancelled this year as a two inch rain fell on the track just days before the meet and the track did not dry out sufficiently for the runners.
The entire project is estimated to cost over $400,000. The total cost would be greater, but the Putnam County R-I maintenance staff has tackled some of the work. Last fall, additional drainage lines were put in by the maintenance crew and FFA students. This past week, PC staff removed the existing outside curbing around the track, as well as the old ticket booth and the fence around the track. Putnam County staff will put in a new fence after the track is completed.
Installing an all-weather track involves several steps. A survey will be completed for radius monuments, points of curve, and all inside and outside track dimensions. The existing track base will be scarified and reshaped. Standard road rock will be hauled in and compacted for the asphalt base. After the rock base has been established, two lifts of asphalt at 2 inches compacted per lift, will be laid. The price of asphalt fluctuates as it is based on the price of oil. Current estimates are that the asphalt cost will be $138,205, which is $23,000 above the original estimate last fall. After the asphalt is laid, a black mat and then a royal blue structural spray will be applied, as well as color-coded metric striping. Fisher Tracks’ work will then be complete.
A new brick entrance will be built to showcase the names of donors to the track and provide a welcoming impression to visitors. The track will be lit with existing lights for evening walking. The track will be open to the public.
Donations continue to come into the superintendent’s office from alumni, businesses, and friends of Putnam County R-I. A $100 donation will earn the donor a personalized brick at the entrance; $500, $1,000 and $5,000 donors will be recognized on black granite tiles. $20 donors will have their names placed on a vinyl banner that will be hung at home football games and track meets. A track committee comprised of local patrons and alumni set a goal to raise $100,000 from donations; the current account balance is just over $64,000.
Several successful fundraisers have been conducted to raise money for the track including a 5K run/walk as part of the alumni weekend, the All-Weather Cookbook, raffle of a quilt created by high school art students, and dinners before Courtwarming and the junior/senior play.
Two grants have been applied for and awarded to help with the cost of track construction. In conjunction with the Putnam County Health Department’s city park grant, $115,000 was awarded to help pay for the asphalt. The grant will be matched by Putnam County R-I. A Department of Natural Resources grant in the amount of $91,500 has been awarded for the rubber mat. The no-match grant is part of the DNR’s tire recycling program.
Tax deductible donations and questions may be directed to the Superintendent’s Office, 803 South 20th Street, Unionville, MO 63565, 660-947-3361.