St. Louis firm transforms two grass fields to synthetic in 44 days

Athletic Turf News

ST. LOUIS – Given a window of just two and half months, Byrne and Jones Construction Co. took only 44 working days to transform two grass football and soccer fields into artificial turf fields for the St. Charles School District in St. Charles, MO. The fields are now hosting St. Charles West High School and St. Charles High School home games and other activities, said a news release from Bryne and Jones.

The school district installed the artificial turf fields to cut maintenance costs and improve player safety, said the news release. The $1.1 million dual installation would normally have taken up to four months depending on the availability of material. Byrne and Jones had them ready Aug. 1, in time for the district to host a regional qualifier for the National Junior Disabled Athletes Association.

“We’re delighted to have two fields which can host an unlimited number of activities and are also safer for our athletes and more cost efficient to maintain,” said Randy Charles, superintendent of the St. Charles School District.
Byrne and Jones accelerated installation through pre-planning by ordering turf, rock base and materials for drainage in advance. It initiated construction May 15 by removing the existing sod. It then laid a fabric, covered it with a rock base and installed 1,500 ft. of drainage pipe. Each fielded was overlaid with 30 pieces of Sprinturf DF artificial turf. Seams were glued using a special epoxy to create a smooth playing surface. The project employed a local union workforce. At peak, 12 journey workers from the carpenters, laborers and operating engineers were on the site.

The fields have a better G-max rating than grass turf, said the company in its release. G-max measures the ability of the surface to absorb impact. The turf’s design also makes it less likely that cleats will stick when an athlete makes a sharp cut, reducing the risk of leg injuries. In addition, the fields are available for unlimited use – including band practices.
Since 2004, Byrne and Jones has installed more than three dozen athletic fields throughout metro St. Louis. Clients include Chaminade, the Fort Zumwalt, Hazelwood, Parkway, Rockwood and Ladue School Districts, Lutheran South, Southern Illinois University (SIU) at Edwardsville, St. Louis Abbey, Villa Duchesne and the Scott Gallagher Soccer Club.

Founded in 1976, Byrne & Jones is the St. Louis area’s largest commercial paving contractor. The firm builds parking lots, roads/highways, running tracks, tennis courts, underground drainage systems and maintains paved surfaces, including micro-surfacing. The company employs more than 80 people at its headquarters in Maryland Heights, MO.

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