Jamaica College to create history with new US$2m stadium
18 September 2018
Jamaica College will be the first high school in Jamaica to have its own stadium when work on the facility is completed in February of 2019, a year after ground was broken for the project earlier this year.
Construction is said to be “far-advanced” on the facility that will boast an eight-lane 400m synthetic track, an international standard football field the size of the one at Kingston’s National Stadium, as well as an initial seating capacity of about 2000, with plans to upgrade to as many as 5000.
The stadium will also boast state-of-the-art lighting that can facilitate High-Definition (HD) television broadcasts during night-time events.
According to Ian Forbes, a member of the project committee, the laying of the track is expected to be completed within the next month, weather permitting, and the grassing of the infield should be completed “in short order.”
When completed, the stadium will also have shot out and discus rings and will also be able to accommodate the javelin and long and triple jump pits.
Forbes declined to reveal the actual cost of the project that SportsMax.TV estimates will be in excess of J$300 million or US$2.1m.
In 2015, GC Foster College constructed a synthetic track at a cost of $J171m. That cost was inflated by the significant amount of work done to prepare the clay base of that track. By comparison, significant work was done cutting, filling and levelling the land that the JC stadium is being built on the western side of the 229-year-old high school on Old Hope Road in Kingston.
The seating and state-of-the-art lighting also factored into SportsMax.TV’s estimates.
The Ashenheim family are the primary contributors to the project, having donated the synthetic track that will see JC join Calabar High School and Kingston College, who were the first and second high schools, respectively, to install synthetic tracks on their school grounds within the past three years.
Three generations of the Ashenheims attended Jamaica College, who have won the ISSA Boys and Girls Championships 21 times. They are also the five-time defending Manning Cup (football) champions, a title they have won 29 times overall.
There will an area for parking that will be able to facilitate a few hundred cars at the rear of the campus.
Forbes said the facility will also earn revenue for the school but that will be introduced in a "controlled fashion."