School Board to interview architects for possible new track and football field facility

Jess Bengtson
Crookston Times

    At their last meeting, Crookston School Board told Superintendent Jeremy Olson to move forward with obtaining RFPs (request for proposal) from interested architects who could give direction on a viable cost estimate for a new track and football field located at Crookston High School. Olson said the project committee asked him to get a recommendation from the board on moving forward with a new facility, but Olson said he wasn’t comfortable coming up with an estimated cost analysis on his own.

    Note: The track and football field committee met numerous times over the past several months to go over the ‘ins and outs’ of the idea after the University of Minnesota Crookston cancelled their football program and the poor condition of Ed Widseth Field track led the schools to seek its own facility.

    Olson told the board in May they could either stay with ICON, who worked with the district on the new bus garage which is now open and operational, or look at other architectural services. Board member Dave Davidson initially motioned to stay with ICON for the new project before board chair Frank Fee added ICON was good to work with on the bus garage, but wasn’t sure on their experience with a track and football field.

    “There are more experienced architects out there (for the track and football field project) and there might even be more in the cities area,” Olson explained.

    Board member Tim Dufault asked Olson how long they’d have to wait if they went with ICON and Olson said he hoped by their June meeting. Dufault added later that he hates to lose time, but should they put out a request for RFPs from other architects they could then go back to Crookston area citizens and say they’ve done their due diligence while looking for the best firm.

    “I understand the concern with the experience level and I wouldn’t hesitate to work with ICON based on their previous work, but we could also find other firms,” Olson added.

    After a couple questions on timing, Olson told the board he could expedite the process for professional services and then the board could decide on an architect based on the RFPs.