New WLU on-campus track in the works

By Emily McLean, Contributing Writer

The West Liberty University Foundation Board met and unanimously voted on Friday, Jan. 27 to build a new track and soccer field on West Liberty’s campus.

The board approved for a loan of $1.5 million that will be paid over the next 10 years. The track is estimated to cost $2.5 million, but it will vary based on the bidding process. With no official word on the location, the commons area is being considered. That location could save West Liberty an estimated $80,000.

President Greiner plans to begin the bid document within the next few weeks. The bidding process generally takes 30 days, when companies will examine the property and post a bid. The bids will be opened and selected on a designated date, but the grading and the moving of land won’t start until late this spring.

Greiner doesn’t anticipate having the track ready for the fall semester, but he is expecting the actual construction to start in the summer.

Head football coach and co-athletic director Roger Waialae, said “Putting a regulation track out here will give students a safer environment to run in.”

Student Morgan Litton has been with the track team for four years, and she feels the track will benefit West Liberty. The track team currently only runs on the indoor track in the ASRC. The West Liberty track team will have the opportunity to host their own meets, and in return bring in revenue.

The  Higher Education Policy Commission is a big factor for approval of the new venues. The Commission oversees and governs West Virginia state college.

Director of Media Relations Maureen Zambito looks forward to the new addition. “It’s a perfect complement for our athletic program because we have so many good things in athletics,” she said.

 Upon completion, the track will be open to all students and, could possibly stay lit for evening hours depending on the final cost. The track will benefit the campus not only for athletes, but it will also be used for campus activities and intramurals.

Photo credit: Emily McLean