Wood stakes mark the outline of a new decorative fence outside the Rocky River High School stadium along Detroit Road as construction begins.
“It’s been a long time coming. We’ve been working on this for several years,” said Sam Gifford, the district’s human resources and support executive director. “There was a lot of people and everyone’s ideas and thoughts were considered.”
The proposal for the fence was approved by the city’s planning commission on July 16 and construction has begun. The project will not cause any delays in traffic and is expected to be finished by Aug. 15, Gifford said.
The decorative fence, which replaces the existing fence, will include brick pillars that match the exterior of the high school with black aluminum bars between each pillar. It will also allow emergency vehicle access through a larger entrance.
Originally part of a much larger stadium renovation that included improvements to handicap accessibility. However, the school board separated the plan that included those renovations due to budget restraints.
The fence is being built by RFC Contracting of Strongsville, and will cost $256,690. It is being funded by the school district and the Rocky River Campus Foundation Inc., a group of parents dedicated to raising funds and developing sponsorships to improve the image of the high school.
The cost was originally estimated at $107,000 but planners decided to extend the length of the fence which raised the cost..
“The cost of the fence has gone up because more of it is being completed,” Gifford said. “It was just going to be installed on Detroit Road as a floating fence with a chain-link fence connecting it to the ticket booths. Then the Campus Foundation said, ‘Let’s just finish it.’”
The district will provide 45% of the funding and the foundation will cover the rest, district spokesman Greg Murphy said.
The foundation has previously helped fund new projects for the high school’s student entrance, the entrance on Detroit Road and the arts and sciences courtyard, which includes the addition of a water feature.
“It was the idea of the Campus Foundation for the new fence,” Gifford said. “They are an extraordinarily generous group…it’s because they went to school here, they live in the community and they want to invest in the school system. We may not have been able to accomplish many of these projects without their assistance.”
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