City and Lake Tahoe Community College moving forward on soccer field construction
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Al Tahoe Boulevard will soon take another step toward being a community recreation center for the City of South Lake Tahoe. City and Lake Tahoe Community College officials approved amended designs for plans to build two new soccer fields at a joint meeting Wednesday, May 4. Work on the project is planned to break ground this summer next to the existing LTCC soccer field.
“It will likely be playable towards the end of next summer,” city public works director Ray Jarvis said.
The project coincides with the new, organic, artificial turf being installed on the existing LTCC soccer field.
The plan is the first major work undertaken by the Community Play Consortium, a joint effort between LTCC and the city.
“I’m excited to get to this point,” mayor Wendy David said. “I think it will be great for the community.”
The revised plans will include two new full-sized grass soccer fields parallel to each other and perpendicular to the existing LTCC field.
“The side-by-side fields are a much better configuration,” city public works engineer and project manager Chuck Taylor said. “Putting them side-by-side makes it more efficient.”
Taylor further explained that the revised plans allow for a more streamlined irrigation system and the possibility of combining the fields for larger events.
Work this summer will include tree removal and field shaping. Grass is not expected to be planted until next summer during the final stages of construction.
Designs last fall included a different field alignment along with a potential baseball field.
The need for redesign came when the Lake Tahoe Unified School District opted out of what was originally intended to be a joint effort between all three organizations.
Current plans allow for the potential addition of a baseball field at a later date.
“It’s totally doable in the future,” Jarvis said.
Because the new design is within the footprint of the original Tahoe Regional Planning Agency approval for the plan, work on the project can proceed as scheduled.
“It’s really going back to what we originally anticipated,” David said, describing the revised plan.
According to Taylor, the original idea for the fields came about back in 2002.
The project is being jointly funded and operated by the city and LTCC, with LTCC accounting for most of the cost of the new turf on their existing field and the city covering construction of the new fields. The joint effort is a multi-million dollar project with the city receiving priority access to the new fields and LTCC able to prioritize programs on their field. All three fields will be used for a variety of LTCC and community recreation programs in the future.
The annual SnowGlobe Music Festival is expected to move to the new fields when they are completed.
“It’s a win-win for the city and LTCC,” college president Kindred Murillo said. “I’m excited.”
The community college’s new turf installation is expected to be complete in August, Murrillo said. The new turf is made of an organic material described as safer chemically and softer than the existing turf.
Speaking to the collaboration between the city and the college and the potential for future initiatives, David added, “This is just the beginning for the Community Play Consortium.”
With the Bijou Bike Park completed last September and other facilities at Bijou Community Park, Al Tahoe Boulevard has been described as the future recreation hub for the city.
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