W&J replaces turf at Cameron Stadium
16 July 2018
Age and an unusually heavy rain period through the first few months of the year were what it finally took for Washington & Jefferson College to replace the turf at Cameron Stadium.
The project, nearly complete, was done by FieldTurf and will be on display when the Presidents open football camp next month.
“Let’s hope it stays dry and we don’t get any more flooding down there,” said Scott McGuinness, director of athletics. “It’s been rough the past couple years. It even flooded in February and that never happens.
“It’s no different than anywhere in Western Pennsylvania. I don’t remember Chestnut Street getting flooded the way it has recently. All the floods in Fox Chapel and the South Hills, it’s nuts.”
McGuinness said the college was about a year ahead of the time schedule it likes to observe with turf replacement.
“The flooding definitely caused a level of hardness,” he said. “We just didn’t feel safe moving ahead with the current surface. It was a mixture of it being time to be replaced and the flooding taking its toll on the surface.”
The installation took about three weeks and was completed by FieldTurf workers. Work began right after Memorial Day and only a few odds and ends remain. McGuinness said he didn’t know the cost but normally these type of projects run between $500,000 and $700,000.
“All the fields are the same,” McGuinness said. “If I had to guess, I would say probably, but I don’t know.”
Workers also made some changes to stop future flood damage.
“We put some cement under the lockers of the football, field hockey and track and field rooms. We put about a foot of cement under them just to raise them up. They received some damage. We’re trying to do some things around the fencing, weighting it down to eliminate any flooding from any angle. We’ve seen the flooding from three different spots.”
The field has two different shades of green and the end zones are black with white lettering. The bench lines are white and break up the red out-of-bounds strips that run along each side and across the back of both end zones.
W&J also is replacing the turf at Alexandre Stadium in North Franklin Township.
“FieldTurf is doing that for soccer and lacrosse,” McGuinness said. “That was due to wear and tear and was long overdue. It’s a commitment the school is making. That facility gets used a ton.”
The turf there had not been replaced since the stadium was built in 2003. Cameron Stadium has had turf since 1999.
McGuinness said future projects will include Henry Memorial Center.