Track and Fields Project
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With roughly 200 student athletes, the girls and boys track teams comprise the high school's largest, most diverse extracurricular activity. Because OPRFHS does not have a regulation track on campus, it has had an agreement with Concordia University Chicago for the teams to use its track in River Forest. The agreement with Concordia concluded with the spring 2023 season, and the high school did not have an option to renew.
In early 2022, the district began collaborating with the Park District of Oak Park (PDOP) to develop a plan to renovate most of the high school's athletic fields and create an intergovernmental agreement (IGA) on shared use of the two entities' facilities. The 25-year IGA, approved in September 2022, includes:
- A 400-meter track on the OPRFHS back field (between the tennis courts and stadium), with a multipurpose turf field in the center
- A new multi-sport field used by varsity baseball in the spring, on the OPRFHS Lake Street south of the high school
- Renovated softball fields, at the PDOP's Ridgeland Common on Lake Street
Per the IGA, the OPRFHS physical education and softball programs will have an expanded use of the Ridgeland Common field. In exchange, PDOP will have access to OPRFHS fields, as detailed in the IGA. This includes access to the high school's new baseball field and the new multipurpose field inside the new track. The improvements to the Ridgeland Common fields are being funded by the high school and include the installation of two scoreboards, security cameras, and additional netting, as well as replacement of the current synthetic turf fields, which are at the end of their useful life.
Expanding the use of field lights on the Lake Street/East Avenue field until 10 p.m. was required to make the sharing possible, and was approved by the Village board.
The total cost of the project is $17,335,486, with the timeline as follows:
|May 2023||Work begins on track and field
Work begins on Lake Street field
|August 2023||Lake Street field completed|
|October 2023||Track and field completed
Work begins on Ridgeland Common field
|November 2023||Ridgeland Common field completed|
Location of new athletic fields illustrated below.