Construction to Be Completed Before First August Game
MONTROSE — Construction is currently underway to replace the 30-year-old press box at the Montrose High School football field in preparation for the fall 2014 season.
The rickety wooden building with loose nails and boards, which swayed in the breeze and was uninsulated, was torn down last week to make way for an upgrade.
MHS Athletic Director Lyle Wright said the original box, completed sometime around 1982, is in desperate need of replacement.
“I think it’s awesome,” Wright said of the upgrade. “This one is going to be a bit bigger, it’s going to be new and not worn out. I am excited we are going to be able to use it for this season.”
The original building was around 327 square ft., and has hosted since the 80s those recording the highs and lows of MHS football history, including the hosting of the state 4A State Championship game in 1991, which the Indians lost to Trinidad 28-24.
Most recent history has seen the Indians become one of the most dominant teams in the Southwestern League, winning league championships in five of the last eight seasons, including post season playoff play. The team is coming off a state runner-up place in the 2013 State 4A title in Denver late last year.
The new structure will be two feet wider, to facilitate stability, and 400 sq. ft., 200 sq. ft. per level, according to Ridgway Valley Enterprises Project Manager Steve Putnam.
Putnam said both levels were torn down separately last week ,using excavators; because of space constraints, due to stadium lighting, the new building will be built on the original foundation.
Press coverage and official takes place on the first level; coaches from both teams are located on the second level (accessing the second story on the original building required climbing up over a dozen stairs that were loose and unstable).
“You were taking your life into your hands climbing those [stairs],” Putnam said, half-joking. “It was about to fall part; you were wondering if it was going to tip over.”
The new building will be better structurally, and insulated. The new stairs to the second level will be made of steel; with work progressing, the project should be completed in time for the the first football game in August.
Putnam said the total cost of the project is around $48,000. Most of the funds were raised through private donations, as part of an ongoing stadium upgrade process. Extended seating and a new front entrance are some of the most recent upgrades.
The team begins training camp Monday, with three-a-day practices set to begin the week after. The Indians begin their season at home Aug. 22 against rival Grand Junction at 7 p.m.