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Keokuk schools move ahead with work on ‘a landmark in the community’

The Keokuk School District's Calvert Stadium.
Will Buss
The Keokuk School District's Calvert Stadium.

Renovations to Calvert Stadium at Keokuk High School will begin next spring.

Phase 1 of the $4 million project includes replacing the grass field with artificial turf and installing a new track to replace the deteriorating cinder surface that encircles the football field.

That work should be completed in time for the beginning of the 2024-2025 school year.

Additional phases include refurbishing the stadium’s grandstand, concession stand, press box, and restrooms.

Superintendent Kathy Dinger said the district has been talking about upgrading the stadium for some time.

“I think it's just important,” Dinger said. “(Calvert Stadium) is kind of a landmark in the community.”

When the school district distributed a survey last spring asking city residents for input about capital improvement projects, a majority of respondents listed the stadium, football field, and track as the top priority.

“The board recently became aware that the track had deteriorated quicker or more quickly than anticipated, so it needed some immediate work,” Dinger said.

“And when they became aware of that, they put steps forward together with input and found that it was also a priority from the community.”

The school district will use SAVE, or Secure an Advanced Vision for Education, bonds to pay for the projects. SAVE bonds are funded through a one-cent tax for infrastructure projects at Iowa public schools.

Calvert Stadium was built in 1964. It is named for William C. Calvert, who was a long-time school board member. He passed away in 1960.

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