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story.lead_photo.caption NWA Democrat-Gazette/BEN GOFF A view of the visitors side press box and bleachers Thursday, July 20, 2017, at the Bentonville West stadium in Centerton.

BENTONVILLE -- The School Board on Monday voted to accept a guaranteed maximum price of $3,831,289 to finish the stadium at West High School.

The price is about $55,000 more than what was initially projected in October, though the project now includes more seats than first planned. There will be 3,184 additional seats -- up from the 2,454 additional seats previously planned -- including 410 for the band, a section that added $110,000 to the price.

Putting it together

Hight Jackson Associates is the architect and Flintco is the construction manager on the West High School stadium project. Both firms worked on the rest of the school, which was completed in July 2016.

Source: Staff report

The higher-than-expected overall cost prompted some questions from board members, but Eric White, board vice president, pointed out members had agreed band bleachers should be included in the project.

Scott Passmore, athletic director, said the alternatives to having band bleachers would be to put the band in chairs behind an end zone or have the band take up space in the home bleacher section.

"But it's 300-plus seats at a minimum those band students are taking up," Passmore said.

The board approved the guaranteed maximum price by a 6-0 vote. Rebecca Powers was the only board member absent.

The board voted last month to accept a contract with Southern Bleacher Co. to design, manufacture and construct the home grandstand with a multilevel press box for an amount not to exceed $820,000, part of the overall project cost.

The home grandstand initially was projected to have 2,094 seats, but facilities director Paul Wallace said by working with Southern Bleacher, they were able to increase the capacity to 2,240. The existing visitor-side bleachers will be expanded by 534 seats, 174 more than originally thought.

"This was not at a significant cost," Wallace said.

Finishing the stadium will allow West High School's varsity football team to host home games on its campus. The team played home games at Bentonville High School's Tiger Stadium for its first two seasons.

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Bleachers, restrooms, a press box, a concessions stand and a ticket booth will be among the features added to complete the stadium. The project is expected to be completed in time for the beginning of the 2018 football season.

The board agreed last summer to put nearly $2 million toward the stadium as "seed money" in hopes of jump-starting a fundraising campaign for the stadium. In October, the board agreed to go along with a plan to provide an additional $1.8 million that the athletic department has pledged to reimburse through sponsorship contributions it receives over the next 15 years.

The School District announced last month First National Bank of NWA had donated $150,000 to the project in exchange for naming rights to the field.

NW News on 02/06/2018

Print Headline: West High stadium project cost finalized

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