Karnes City High School Athletic Director Jim Wood presented to the board concerns regarding the current worn condition of the track and the need for a new track surface in order to maintain safety standards, as well as for the track to stay in quality athletic and recreational use.
Wood explained to the board that the current track surface is seven years old and that life expectancy for track surfaces is six to eight years. Wood stated how factors such as weather, notably the Texas heat and recent years of drought, can compound the wearing out of the track surface.
“The last three to four months we’ve really known that it’s starting to wear and tear more noticeably,” said Wood. “One of the main things is that there is uneven running surface around the lines and numbers on the track. It’s not dangerous right now but it is very noticeable. When you walk around the starting lines to where there’s the big numbers in each lane, you can tell a difference; there’s a difference from where it is painted on and where it is not.”
According to district officials, the painted lanes and numbers on the track has actually acted as a sealant and has protected that part of the track so that it is raised, whereas the other unpainted areas of the track have become depressed due to various weather conditions over time.
Aside from the concerns of uneven surface, there is also a concern that the track is becoming more slick and losing its proper traction as well.
“If we can do it this summer, we need to do it, because if not, by next year it’s going to be really bad,” said Wood of the track replacement.
With the approval by the board to move forward with the track surface replacement, the district is considering bids by Hellas Sports Construction and also Beynon Sports Surfaces. The district will consult experts choosing the right company and process, and hopes to begin the project this summer.
“Our track is not just only used by the school,” declared Wood. “There are a lot of community members that use it as well.”