2017-06-15 / Front Page

District will install new artificial turf on high school athletic fields

Price tag to hit $1.4 million
By John Loesing


OLD SCHOOL—The turf at Agoura and Calabasas high schools is 10 years old and deteriorating, officials say. 
Courtesy of LVUSD OLD SCHOOL—The turf at Agoura and Calabasas high schools is 10 years old and deteriorating, officials say. Courtesy of LVUSD New artificial turf is being installed on the athletic fields at Agoura and Calabasas high schools this summer. It will replace the artificial turf installed at both campuses in 2007.

“ The fields are nearing their end of life,” Agoura High School athletic director Garrett Lepisto said.

“We are grateful that the school district supports the safety of students and athletes with this project.”

Users of the fields say they are seeing signs of wear and tear and feeling increased heat from the turf’s old in-fill, the small pellets of black rubber that are meant to absorb shock when a player falls.

“The current turf is very hard and hot. It has torn at the seams, and the rubber in-fill congregates in one area,” Calabasas High athletic director Cory Chandler said. “I believe the new turf will be much better all around.”

Lepisto said the turf upgrade will benefit all students, not just athletes. P.E. classes are taught on the fields at both high schools.

The Las Virgenes Unified School District Board of Education approved the $1.4-million renovation work in March. It will be paid for out of Measure G, a $128-million bond expenditure approved by voters in 2006.

The school district chose Austin, Texas-based Hellas Construction to install its Matrix brand of artificial turf.

Shawn Vudmaska, facilities and maintenance supervisor for LVUSD, said the new turf will be a denser green material with in-fill made of coconut fiber.

“It’s a green alternative to the rubber,” Vudmaska said. “There will be a little more maintenance to keep it up, but it’s better for the hot weather we experience here.”

The turf will also be lined with a special pad that is meant to increase shock absorption and reduce the chance of injury when students fall, Vudmaska said.

The replacement is scheduled to begin at Agoura High this month and at Calabasas High in July. The school district hopes to have both projects completed by the beginning of August.

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