East Kentwood Falcon Stadium
The existing 1950’s football/track facility was located at the middle school, some distance from the high school. To accommodate their athletic program and expand their campus setting, the district wished to create a complex that could support football, track, soccer, marching band, and physical education. There was a vacant, 25 acre parcel adjacent to the campus that the district thought was unusable because of large detention basins, underground utilities, overhead high voltage wires, and sloping terrain. Our team reassessed the site and determined a layout could be arranged around the existing barriers. By strategically raising the major event areas and stepping the site along its natural grade line, the project team made use of the adjacent site giving the district a state-of-the-art stadium, now on their campus.
Involvement was key on this new stadium. Athletic directors, coaches, parents, staff, student council, and athletes were all involved in the planning. The selection of the artificial turf was comprehensive and involved visits to college stadiums and actual work-outs on various turf products by athletes. An artificial turf utilizing an all-rubber granule infill was selected, which allows for unlimited play. Those involved were interested in making their new stadium a multi-use venue. To that end, the field was designed with a flat surface so that soccer and football teams could use the new space. The 9-lane “sandwich,” polyurethane track system supports dual and tri team track meets and also leaves the 9th lane for local walkers and joggers from the community.
Because of the input from end-users, staff, and parents, the facility serves its constituents well and is treated with great care. Site access is controlled through home and visitor ticket booths that house ample concession and toilet facilities. The elevated plaza offers a gathering space with the capacity for outdoor grilling. The home and visitor team rooms are located opposite the entry plaza so as to separate the players from other game-time activities. This stadium was named by the Detroit News as the number one high school stadium in Michigan in 2005.