The 25-year-old blacktop is gone.
The track redevelopment project began on the grounds of the Weyauwega-Fremont High School on Wednesday, June 1, and within a day, all of the asphalt had been removed.
Last February, the school board unanimously voted to spend no more than $320,000 on the project.
Point of Beginning of Stevens Point designed the new track and is the general contractor for the project.
Local businesses are also part of the project, including Faulks Bros. Construction and Tim’s Lighting Co.
“Faulks has been very generous with their work,” said Matt Wilbert, who is the district’s middle and high school principal. “We’re very thankful to have them on board.”
He said that Tim’s Lighting will be involved in the project in several ways. Tim’s Lighting is owned by Tim Cullen.
The company will be adding a special touch to the entrance and will also help with the football scoreboard.
Wilbert said that part of the current entryway was built in memory of Cullen’s father, Thomas Cullen Sr.
“I’m excited about the way it’s going to look,” Wilbert said.
Late last week, Faulks Bros. Construction was working on grading and leveling the track, following the removal of the asphalt.
“Then, they will add the proper amount of dirt or stone for proper drainage and then the asphalt,” Wilbert said.
At that point in the project, the fencing will be put up, because tire traffic will have to be kept off of the surface, he said.
The last step will be the rubberized surface. That will be put on top of the 3 inches of asphalt.
Wilbert said the old track had 1 1/2 inches of asphalt on it.
The rubberized surface will be applied via a spray. Five layers will be applied, he said.
The track will be black in color. Wilbert said that will allow for the painted lines to show up better. He said they will also last longer on that color, which means the district will not have to repaint the lines as often, thus saving taxpayer dollars.
The rubberized surface on the track will be an easier surface for the student athletes to run on and Wilbert said the surface will result in more competitive races.
“Having an eight-lane rubber track allows you to have very competitive track meets,” he said. “We will be able to host more things.”
There are other aspects to the project.
The triple jump will be moved so that it is right next to the long jump and the pole vault will be right between them, Wilbert said.
Side projects include moving water sources and planning for the future by putting in starter pipes for an underground water system.
“Then in the future we can tap right in,” he said.
The middle school and high school track teams are also playing a role in what is done.
Wilbert said they raised about $7,000. That money will go toward part of the landscaping.
A final aspect of the track redevelopment project will include a paved walkway from inside of the entrance gate with decorative shrubs and brickwork.
“It will be more aesthetically pleasing,” he said. “My goal is when people walk in, they say, ‘Wow! Here it is.’ We’re very excited.”