The Conroe Independent School District's new South County sports complex made its public debut Aug. 24 with a community open house for residents to explore the natatorium and Woodforest National Bank Stadium.
This $40-million project is ready to switch on the stadium floodlights and open the 62-meter pool for the new school year. Visitor's were given a chance to tour the facility from 3-5 PM.
The district began construction on the facility early last year on the plot of land behind the Portofino shopping center on David Memorial Drive in Shenandoah.
Moorhead Stadium in Conroe was overcrowded, hosting Thursday, Friday and Saturday games for the district's five high schools. Swim teams were forced to use the Woodlands Athletic Center to practice without a district natatorium.
The complex will serve as the home field for The Woodlands High, The Woodlands College Park High and Oak Ridge High schools and several Woodlands swimming organizations, including Woodlands Masters Team, Marlin Summer League Club and Woodlands Water Polo and Diving Academy will share the pool with school teams.
The stadium will play host to 25 games this season, more than enough to pack down the fresh turf. Peacock said the new turf is a mixture of two styles and colors, yellow and green, to create a more natural look. He said players will kick up black rubber for the first year but expects it to settle as the turf is packed down by rain and use.
A new scoreboard will not only provide the game's score and ball possession, but also allow for instant replays and digital graphics.
The Locker Rooms feature LARGE lockers:
The Conroe ISD natatorium, the district's first, is already scheduled to host two regional swim meets in the next two years, a feat for a new facility.
The pool's deck area has the capacity for 900 swimmers, almost 450 more than the University of Houston's facility. The natatorium was built to the same standards as local universities, the space equaling that of the University of Texas at Austin's pool area and larger than Texas A&M University's facility.
"It really puts us on par with those university campuses," Fruia said. "It gives them (students) a little bit of an advantage of what to expect at a major event."
Fruia said students will already be used to the Olympic-sized pool and prepared for large-scale regional swim meets at college campuses.
The natatorium has seating for 1,100 people, Fruia said, on an elevated deck that will be air-conditioned while the area around the pool will be a mere two degrees cooler than the water.
The pool can be made into two 25-meter pools and has two 3-meter and four 1-meter diving boards. Besides the 34 swim meets already scheduled in its first year, 17 of them invitational events, Fruia said the pool will be open to the public during certain hours, but only for lap swimming.
The natatorium will be open to the public 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Swimmers should check the CISD Web site, conroeisd.net, for further information about access to the pool.
The first game of the season played at Woodforest Bank Stadium will be Oak Ridge High against Caney Creek High Aug. 28 for a Thursday night game.
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