Shuford fields to be regraded

Published 8:00 am Friday, February 24, 2023

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The Troup County Board of Commissioners approved a contract to regrade the infields at the Shuford Fields softball complex on Tuesday.

The work has been needed for quite some time, said Parks and Recreation Director Lance Dennis.

“They’ve basically never been done,” Dennis said. “They’ve never been laser graded, the lips cut or anything like that.”

Over time, the fields have developed low and high spots due to regular use and need to be releveled for a better play surface and to help with water runoff.

Dennis said that the regrading is recommended for infields every four or five years.

“That field has gotten no attention over the last 20 years. If it rains, we’re pretty much rained out for a day or two at least. It just holds water everywhere on the infields there, and it needs to be built back up,” Dennis said. “That one’s pushing, I think 20 or 30 years since its inception.”

“I get constant complaints about the infield there,” Dennis said.

The lowest bid for the regrading was awarded to Turfplanner of Georgia at a cost of $37,500.

Dennis said Turfplanner has an innovative system, which is one of only 12 machines in the country to laser grade the infield. The system will cut the lip lines and will not damage the sod.

“We don’t want to have to go back and repay to have sod put back in there. It cuts into the roots, which will regrow,” Dennis said. “You can actually play about 15 minutes after it’s done and the grass will start growing.”

Dennis said the challenge at Shuford is the way that field was designed. He said they will have to take down fences to get dirt in there to build it back up.

The funds to pay for the work will come out of SPLOST IV funds designated for the park.

The regrading will only be for the six fields at the Shuford complex. Dennis said they also got bids for the Harris softball complex, but they just don’t have the money to do both.

“Redoing Harris would be an additional $47,400,” Dennis said.

County Manager Eric Mosley said the Harris fields were redone about six years ago.

Dennis said they are hoping the work can be done over spring break so the girls softball season is not delayed.

The low bid was unanimously approved by the commissioners.