Renovations make bleachers accessible
Published: Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 12:03
Nearly $35,000 is being invested in the renovation of the visitor’s side of the bleachers at Comet Stadium, adding a ramp for fans and students with disabilities.
The construction is set to begin in early March and projected to last until the beginning of July.
“The Department of the State architect felt it was necessary for our college to go through with these renovations,” Capital Projects Manager Burl Toler said.
Buildings and Grounds Manager Bruce King said the small project is fairly simple and involves building a ramp on a platform for people with disabilities to get up into the bleachers and watch games.
The home side of the stadium, where the Contra Costa College football team plays all its home games, already has a ramp.
King said the bleacher renovation is part of a larger project to modernize Comet Stadium.
The project is broken down into three phases. Phase one was the installation of the artificial turf two years ago. Phase two is meeting Americans with Disabilities Act requirements and revamping the bleachers. Phase three is bringing concession stand and rest rooms up to code so people with disabilities can use them.
Disabled Students Programs and Services instructional assistant Richard Stollings said, “Anytime you do major construction at the college, you have to take care of accessibility.”
He shared his joy about the improvement being made to the Comet Stadium, but also said that other important renovations still need to be made.
“The Pool, the (Liberal Arts Building, Health Sciences Building, Applied Arts Building), all have accessibility issues.”
There are doors that do not open and ramps that only go so far around the buildings, he said.
Any construction done now has to be compliant with the rules and regulations of the ADA, Athletic Director John Wade said.
“The bleachers hadn’t been a issue. Nobody has complained in my 10 years of being here, but it does make it more convenient,” he said.
“Not everybody wants to be in the sunshine. Some people may want to sit in the shade and this ramp will make easy to do so.”
Comet Stadium will look new and improved with these renovations.
Football coach Alonzo Carter was elated after hearing the news of the construction.
“I wasn’t even aware of this, but I believe it’s necessary, and I’m happy our college is moving in that direction,” he said. “Nobody should be discriminated against. Our disabled students and parents should be accommodated and made to feel welcome.”