McConnell-Talbert Stadium in Warner Robins to be renovated

jmink@macon.comOctober 15, 2012 

KATHLEEN -- The Houston County school board is expected to take a step Tuesday toward the completion of several renovation projects.

McConnell-Talbert Stadium is scheduled for a face-lift, which will cost an estimated $2 million to $3 million and will include lighting, restrooms and infrastructure renovations. The 6,000-seat stadium, which is currently shared by Houston County, Northside and Warner Robins high schools, will also receive a press box for the visitor’s side, Facilities Director Jason Daniel said Monday during a school board work session at Matt Arthur Elementary School.

“It was built in the 1960s, and it’s not been (renovated) since then,” he said during a break.

Daniel recommended the board approve Austell-based Southern Architects & Engineers to complete design work for the project, and the board will make its decision during Tuesday’s school board meeting.

The first phase, which includes lighting, restrooms and press box renovations, is slated to be finished before July 4, Daniel said.

Additionally, gymnasiums in six Houston County elementary schools are in store for renovations. Bonaire, Centerville, Kings Chapel, Morningside, Lindsey and Parkwood elementary schools will receive gym renovations, which include new lighting, paint and flooring. The gyms’ carpet flooring will be replaced with sports flooring, Daniel said. The first phase is scheduled to be complete by April and is projected to cost more than $838,000.

Several schools also will receive new heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. The school board will review Tuesday the second and third phases of the HVAC replacement project, which will cost more than $6 million and is scheduled to be completed by August. The schools receiving the new systems are: Lindsey Elementary, Northside Elementary, David Perdue Elementary, Russell Elementary, Warner Robins High, Elberta Center, Parkwood Elementary, Pearl Stephens Elementary, Perry High and Westside Elementary.

School bus stop arm cameras

Board members also are expected to discuss equipping some school bus stop arms with cameras, which would help identify drivers who do not stop as children enter and exit the buses.

If the request is approved Tuesday, cameras would be installed on 20 Houston County school bus stop arms. Arizona-based American Traffic Solutions would install and maintain the cameras at no cost to the school district and would split revenue from violator fines with the school system and the Houston County Sheriff’s Office.

Drivers violate the bus stop arms about 61 times a day in Houston County, according to board of education documents.

To contact writer Jenna Mink, call 256-9751.

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