STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
Soccer enthusiasts looking to get on the pitch at Highland Lakes Elementary School later this year might have to wait an additional 12 months after the city of Granite Shoals extended a timeline to build youth fields at the campus.
During its March 12 meeting, the Granite Shoals City Council approved a new contract with Marble Falls Independent School District to build up to two youth-size soccer fields at Highland Lakes Elementary but extended the deadline for completion to Sept. 1, 2020. Initially, the two entities were aiming for a Sept. 1, 2019 finish date.
Granite Shoals City Manager Jeff Looney explained that that city is currently involved in a number of other projects and wanted extra time on the youth soccer field project.
Looney, who joined the city in September 2018, recommended council members approve the new contract.
The city manager said the area in question is more than enough for a full-size regulation soccer field, which measures 100 yards long by 60 yards wide. Youth soccer fields are smaller in dimension.
“There’s more than a quarter of an acre,” Looney said.
Youth associations typically play one youth game on each end of the adult field.
Under the contract that once the construction is completed, the school district is responsible for the overall maintenance of the land and improvements other than water lines.
The city is responsible for the maintenance and repair of the water utilities serving the land.
Former Granite Shoals City Manager Ken Nickel had advocated for a soccer field or more at Highland Lakes Elementary School. During the August 2016 MFISD Board of Trustees meeting, where the members approved the initial agreement, Nickel explained how many kids this could potentially benefit.
“We have 600 children,” he told the trustees, referring to the number of youth in the city. “I don’t have a soccer field or a football field or a basketball court or a volleyball court. I think this is the first step for many things to do in Granite Shoals.”