Improvements Coming to Stratford and Thomas Jefferson Parks

Published on July 15, 2017

  • First significant updates at Stratford Park in more than 50 years

  • Thomas Jefferson Park's synthetic turf field to be replaced

The Arlington County Board today approved contracts to make the first significant improvements to Stratford Park since it was built more than 50 years ago, and to replace the synthetic turf surfacing at Thomas Jefferson Park community field.

"Arlingtonians love their parks and use them heavily," said Arlington County Board Chair Jay Fisette. "The updates for Stratford Park, and the replacement of the field at TJ are part of a systematic effort by the County to maintain and upgrade our parks and fields, so that we can continue to serve the recreation and sports interests of our community."

Stratford Park tennis, basketball courts to be replaced

[caption id="attachment_12891" align="alignleft" width="150"] Stratford Park[/caption]

The County Board voted 5 to 0 to approve a $2.1 million contract with Meridian Construction Company, Inc. to replace the tennis and basketball courts and renovate the diamond field at Stratford Park. Visitors will also enjoy better seating for teams and spectators, ADA accessibility to all the park facilities, and a new picnic area, light fixtures and site furnishings. This park has not received significant capital renovation since it was first constructed in the 1950s and 1960s.  The improvements will help meet the need for youth baseball fields and will reopen two tennis courts closed because they were badly deteriorated.

High Intensity Discharge lamps for courts

The High Intensity Discharge (HID) lamps that now light the courts will be replaced with new HID lamps. Although the final bid documents specified LED lights for the courts, the County did not engage the public on the type of lighting for the courts, so the County will use HID lights. The County plans to engage the public in the lighting design early in the design process for future projects.

Construction to begin this summer

The County delayed the Stratford Park renovations while Arlington Public Schools (APS) completed its community process for planning the conversion of the Stratford Building, home to the HB Woodlawn Secondary Program, to a 1,000-seat middle school. The delay ensured that the school and park projects would be complementary.

The original project budget was $1.786 million, and is funded with Park Maintenance Capital. However, the 18-month delay and increased costs for storm water management resulted in a low bid that was higher than the original construction budget. The County will cover the additional cost with $400,000 from the bond capital maintenance contingency account and $421,000 from the Department of Management and Finance capital contingency.

Construction will begin this summer, and is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2018.

Replacing Thomas Jefferson Park's heavily-used field 

With a 5 to 0 vote, the Board agreed to approve a $474,400 contract to FieldTurf USA, Inc. to replace the synthetic turf at Thomas Jefferson Park's rectangular community field. Improvements

[caption id="attachment_12892" align="alignright" width="150"] Thomas Jefferson Park[/caption]

include replacing the synthetic turf surfacing, infill, inlaid game field markings, corner flags, soccer goals, fencing behind both goals, asphalt path and risers on north side of field, shade structures for existing sports seating, signage as well as repairs to the field base. The County will split the cost of the project with APS, with the County paying 70 percent and APS 30 percent.

Softer pristine rubber material, silica sand for turf infill

The County will use EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) combined with silica sand for the infill. EPDM, which was most recently used at Williamsburg/Discovery School and Greenbrier Park fields, is a pristine rubber material that resembles and plays like crumb rubber, but is not made from recycled materials. The product is softer than crumb rubber and is less abrasive on turf fibers than rubber. As part of the demolition, the existing synthetic surfacing and rubber in-fill will be recycled to the greatest extent possible.

Construction is planned to begin after the Arlington County Fair in August. Arlington currently has 15 synthetic fields. The adopted Fiscal Year 2017-2026 Capital Improvement Program lays out a schedule to replace approximately two to three fields a year.

To read the staff reports on these items, visit the County website. Scroll down to items No. 30 and 31 on the Agenda for the Sat. July 15, 2017 Regular County Board meeting.