The long-awaited Santa Barbara High School Peabody Stadium refurbishment and modernization project is expected to be completed by the end of the month.
The $39 million project is a major update to the nearly century-old stadium along East Anapamu Street. A groundbreaking ceremony was held in August 2017.
Principal Elise Simmons expressed her commitment to hosting an official graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020 at Peabody Stadium when coronavirus-related restrictions are lifted and people can meet in public spaces again.
Santa Barbara Unified School District officials also plan to host a dedication ceremony for the stadium at a future date.
“The COVID-19 pandemic may affect fall sports, but if there is a season-opener, it will be played at the new Peabody Stadium,” said Steve Vizzolini, director of facilities and operation.
Santa Clarita-based AMG & Associates had completed 99 percent of its project work as of late April, according to Vizzolini.
Most of the work has been completed on the $39 million update to the nearly century-old Peabody Stadium at Santa Barbara High. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)
“The general contractor’s schedule has slipped by a few weeks, generally because of poor coordination and scheduling of their subcontractors,” Vizzolini said.
The last major milestone for the public works contractor included placing the asphalt paving to support the new synthetic track surface and new parking lot near the field house and pool. That work was scheduled for late April. There is a 28-day cure time before the synthetic track surface can be installed.
The track surface is a separate contract, and W2W Inc. will install it.
“The landscaping for the project is nearly complete, and is one of the tasks being worked on,” Vizzolini said.
The Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant stadium seating is in storage on-site. It will be one of the last components installed to protect the seats from damage during other construction.
Vizzolini said the stadium bleachers are complete, but the donor plaques on the back need to be installed.
“That will be done by a different contractor at the same time as donor plaques are installed in the Donor Plaza,” he said. “That work is scheduled to happen during the 28-day cure time.”
The Peabody Stadium project is funded by voter-approved community bond measures, developer fees, state seismic mitigation funds and the Foundation for Santa Barbara High School. The project breakdown is $29 million for construction and $10 million for soft costs.
The stadium will feature a new 2,300-seat concrete grandstand and press box structure, track, athletic field with artificial turf, plus improved lighting, sound amplification system and underground utility upgrades, including major storm drainage facilities and more.
The well-used basketball courts at Santa Barbara High sit idle adjacent to the nearly completed Peabody Stadium. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)
It grew into a multimillion-dollar renovation project to better serve students and the surrounding community.
“It’s a neighborhood benefit as well as a school benefit,” said Katie Jacobs, a parent of Santa Barbara High School graduates and director of the Foundation for Santa Barbara High School.
The foundation raised $5 million for the project and finished the fundraising campaign in 2016, Jacobs said. Financial supporters include a wide range of donors, including alumni, community members, current SBHS parents, Montecito Bank & Trust and others.
Adjacent to the stadium field on the high school campus, the outdoor basketball courts are widely used by community members throughout the year, Jacobs said.
“Everybody is poking their heads in the little gaps between the fence to see the stadium,” Jacobs said. “We are all kind of little kids peering into the candy shop and can’t wait to go in.”
Work continues to complete the $39 million update to the nearly century-old Peabody Stadium at Santa Barbara High. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)
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