ASD Directors Hear Plans for New West Shamokin Field House

School directors saw artist renderings of the new Jack E. Boyer Stadium Field House at West Shamokin High School. The field house is expected to cost $1.5 million.

Directors of the Armstrong School District heard plans last night on construction of new athletic field house at West Shamokin High School.

Architect Matt Hanson from IKM Architects described the project.

“The facility would house a new fitness, health and wellness facility for the physical education program, as well as locker rooms for the stadium athletic teams – football, soccer with mens/womens restroom facilities and support infrastructure, training facilities, and coaches offices that go along with those programs,” Hanson said.

The facility would not be a part of the existing school, but built as a stand-alone structure.

“It is separate from the existing high school, on the opposite side of the parking lot, next to an existing maintenance building,” Hanson explained. “We’ve actually explored an opportunity to build that next to that maintenance building that really allows this building to create a new entrance for the stadium itself. There will be a way for the public to enter the stadium in a more dramatic way and I think a way that’s more consistent with the celebration of what Friday nights in Western Pennsylvania is really all about.”

The facility will have a weight training area. It will be heated and used throughout the school year. Hanson said air conditioning for summer training has not been considered.

“We may explore including (air conditioning) as a bid alternate for contractors to put a price to and the district would then have some information to make a judgment on that as part of the construction project. In our current budget and defined program, the consensus is to not spend the money on cooling. Cooling is also something that can be added later for relatively minimal effort.”

One of the problems with the West Shamokin property is the wetland area that is part of the property. Previous drawings have proved to be inaccurate. ASD will have to consider hiring Gateway Engineers to perform a certified site survey at an estimated cost of $15,000.

“We need to understand exactly where (the wetland) is at, and there’s an environmental investigation that’s performed for that,” Hanson said. “The wetlands are not a problem.  We want to make sure we don’t disturb them and if we do have to disturb them, we have to do that in the appropriate way and have the appropriate accommodations for that.”

Hanson told the Board to expect to bid the project in March and construction to begin in April 2020. He said the construction will be a six-month project. Estimated costs are approximately $300 per square foot, or close to $1.5 million.

Director Doug Smith said he wanted to see a “hard ceiling” established that the school district will not exceed for the project.

The Board will consider the approving the project in December.

Matt Hanson, an architect with IKM Architects, shows the new field house that will be located adjacent to an existing garage.