After receiving reports about the need for a track at Hobbton High School, officials are making progress toward the goal.
During a Monday meeting, the Sampson County Schools Board of Education authorized school officials to proceed with engineering contracts with Engineer Glen Tew. The amount of the contract is not expected to exceed $15,000. Expenditures will be taken from the Capital Hobbton District account. During the meeting Superintendent Dr. Eric Bracy and board member Glenn Tart provided an update on the requested project.
Tart said selected area will be behind the football stadium and the girls’ softball field.
“It’s best to have it there for safety reasons and it will fit in the area,” Tart said.
In early 2016, school officials received a report from Al Britt, athletic coordinator for Sampson County Schools. At the time, the estimated cost was about $200,000. The amount, which included engineering and asphalt paving, came from Lakewood High School track information from several years ago.
Prior to the approval of authorization of the contracts, board members listened to a presentation by track coach Jeff Klaves, who talked about the success of the program. He received support from other Hobbton supporters as well. Hobbton is the only high school in the area without a track. Therefore students have to practice at other locations in Sampson County.
A request was made to put the track around the existing football field, but there was not enough room to do so. At the recent meeting, a question arose regarding a ditch issue on the selected land behind the football field. According to Tart, The United States Army Corps of Engineers and Tew said the land is suitable for the track project.
“They said the ditch would not be an issue,” Tart said.
Lou Nelon, executive director of Auxiliary Services for Sampson County, added that the district is using contractor serving as a consultant from the Corps of Engineers. No further action is required on the matter regarding the ditch issue.
The other alternative was near a playground at Hobbton Elementary School or by Hobbton Middle School, with access through Water Oak Lane. Both locations had uneven land for construction.
Previously, the estimated cost ranged from more than $183,000 to $400,000. Along with the track, some of the amenities included a pole vault, long jump and high jump areas. Prior estimates does not include lights, bleachers, concession stands or fencing.
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.