Across the United States, school is back in session for many students, parents, teachers, and administrators. From K-12 to colleges and universities, students are cracking the books and contractors and vendors are busily cracking open solicitations for related infrastructure in support of athletics and other activities. Along with new construction of stadiums, venues, and fields, many projects for rehab, enhancements and the like are keeping many businesses busy.
It’s well known that Americans enjoy and have a passion for sports and recreation activities. We have reported on this topic multiple times over the years. The trends continue. This year, public sector entities, to include education, will spend many $billions on stadiums, arenas, courts, fields, turf, and lighting.
We all understand, and are reminded constantly, that colleges and universities are spending a lot of money in financing athletics, to include infrastructure for sports. However, what about the local perspective? Many U.S. school districts realize the benefits of funding athletic activities for students. In addition, we see an ongoing emphasis on facilities being put in place and utilized to serve multiple schools and multi-purpose venues that can support many sports and be employed for events, as well.
What’s being reported?
Stadiums. IbisWorld: ‘Sports Stadium Construction Industry in the US – Market Research Report’. “Over the five years to 2018, the Sports Stadium Construction industry expanded, as demand for industry projects rose in response to increased government funding and an increase in construction activities.” More.
University of Missouri, Sports Turf AdvanTage: ‘Sports Turf Industry Fact Sheet’.
- Annual purchases of sports turf products and services is over $1.29 billion on over 2.8 million acres. That’s approximately $457 per acre. These figures do not include salaries.
- Parks and recreation makes up $480 million in annual purchases while schools are at $685 million, college/universities $71 million, and professional facilities spend approximately $52 million.
- Professional sports facilities average approximately 15 acres spending $4,333 per acre, colleges/universities spend $1, 075 per acre on an average of 30 acres, schools spend $658 per acre on an average of 65 acres, and parks spend an average of $284 per acre over 130 acres.
- Average annual spending on equipment and supplies at colleges/universities is $32,300, while parks spend $38,850. Schools spend $42,750 and professional facilities spend $65,000. More.
Forbes: ‘New Stadium/Arena Lighting Enhances Fan Experience; Better For Environment’. “One of the newest trends that fans attending sports arenas and stadiums are noticing are new LED lighting systems that make the game look incredible. That switch from antiquated metal-halide lights to LED technology began in 2012 when a young upstart company, Ephesus Lighting installed the first LED sports lighting system at the Onondaga County War Memorial AHL hockey arena in Syracuse, New York. Less than four years later, that same company’s lights illuminated Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.” More.
What’s being requested?
SAMPLE ACTIVE RELATED BIDS/RFPs
Summary for “Stadiums” keyword: Sep 2017 - Sep 2019
Graph for “Stadiums” keyword: Sep 2017 - Sep 2019
These plans aren’t always met with 100% support from taxpayers and others. At times, you will see and hear the outcry, “too expensive”, “unnecessary”, “return on investment is too low”. For sure, reducing or cutting student activities does provide the possibility of short term savings, but others counter that there are consequences to scaling down or completely eliminating programs.
Along with the programs helping to bring about improved physical and mental health for students, experts note how athletics provides tools for motivating and developing well-rounded citizens and contributes to pride and togetherness within the schools and local communities. Of course, there are economic gains realized from investing in athletic programs and the appropriate infrastructure.
Agree, disagree? What is going on in your community?
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