VHPS will open beautiful new, on-site athletic facilities for students and community in Fall of 2019.
ORANGE, CA (APRIL 12, 2019) – In May 2018, the Orange Unified School District (OUSD) Board of Trustees unanimously approved the modernization of football and track facilities at Villa Park High School (VPHS). The facility upgrades would ensure that Spartan athletes, students and community members safely enjoy world-class athletic and fitness opportunities.
Originally scheduled to open to students and the surrounding community in Spring of 2019, the winter’s higher than normal rainfall has prompted that District to expand the modernization schedule to ensure the efficiency of the new facilities.
“With all our projects, our first concern is delivering best-in-class facilities that ensure student safety,” said Scott Harvey, Senior Executive Director for OUSD Facilities, Maintenance and Operations. “The unprecedented rains we experienced this winter have made us cautious in our delivery schedule. Our student-athletes and community deserve world-class facilities and extending our delivery schedule safeguards our ability to do that.”
The modernized athletic fields will feature the installation of environmentally-beneficial synthetic turf, all-weather rubberized tracks and other improvements. Student athletes had been using the previous athletic fields for decades and the conditions of those older facilities were past their prime. At VPHS, track and field facilities are much-loved community assets and used by students and neighbors alike for physical fitness activities such as walking and jogging. The improvements will provide students and the community with safer surfaces for athletic competition and recreational use, reduce day-to-day maintenance costs for the school district and weather-related “down time,” and eliminate the need for, and the cost and impacts associated with, irrigation and fertilization.
Timing was essential for this series of facility improvements since Fred Kelly Stadium, located in Orange, closed in December 2018 for a complete rebuild to comply with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). VPHS utilized the stadium for varsity football and other athletic events. The renovation of VPHS’ on-site facilities will allow a full complement of sporting events to take place on the Spartan’s home turf for the first time in decades.
The high school athletic field renovations have utilized capital projects reserves, that the district designated for this purpose and has been saving over the past decade. No “Measure S” school bond dollars, which were approved by voters in 2016, will be used for these projects. In conjunction with the sports facilities, Measure S projects broke ground in January 2019 and begin construction in late spring. Together, the two separate projects will transform the Villa Park High School campus.
The scheduled athletic field renovations have taken to take place in two stages. First was the completion of the new synthetic track and field by mid-February 2019 followed by stage two which would see the completion of additional sitework such as ADA accessible pathways and fencing. The District’s revised modernization schedule now anticipates the stage one to be completed in June 2019 and the entire project to be complete by October 2019. Once the entire project is completed, it will be available for student and District approved community uses.