The football field at Hunting Park has been degrading for some time now, so why is there a bulldozer digging more holes in its surface? That is because there are plans to have the field remodeled, but first Kobe Addo-Boateng needed to test the current soils drainage.
“I’m measuring the soil’s infiltration, trying to see how fast it absorbs water,” Kobe said.
Kobe, a senior engineer for Langan Environmental Services, contended that poor infiltration is what caused the field’s deterioration.
“Right now the field cannot drain water and standing puddles form. When the football team has to practice on this saturated soil it gets destroyed,” Kobe said.
In order for the new field to have a better appearance and proper drainage there are plans to raise the surface by taking soil from the small hills that surround the field. To make sure that soil is formidable, Dan Chieco, a senior associate for Wells Appel Landscaping Architecture and Urban Design, needed to take a few samples.
“We’re checking the soil’s fertility, how nutrient rich it is. If we believe it to be fertile enough and benefit the infiltration we’ll start to move it down to the field,” Chieco said.
Chieco and his men dug up about four feet of soil before they began to hit dense clay. Chieco said he thinks clay isn’t the best for infiltration but the hill’s topsoil proved to be more suitable.
“This clay is very dense, almost like modeling clay, and is better used for water retention opposed to drainage,” Chieco said. “There appears to be a couple of feet of good dirt above it though, so we’re taking samples at different levels.”
Chieco also worked on the drainage of the park’s newly renovated baseball field. He is optimistic that his samples will yield positive results, but has a back-up plan just in case.
“If we can’t use the surrounding soil for infiltration we’ll need to think about an underground piping system, but the way it looks now I think we’ll be good,” Chieco said. “Hopefully, we can incorporate it with the baseball field’s natural drainage to improve overall infiltration throughout the park.”
The field’s renovations are expected to be completed for the Hunting Park Aztec’s upcoming fall football season.