Truman State University is planning a million-dollar project to renovate the Gardner Track and field at Stokes Stadium. The project aims to start toward the end of this semester and finish before fall 2017, reshaping and redesigning the field.

Stokes Stadium is home to Truman’s football and track and field team. It is also open to clubs that practice on the field, along with students and community members who want to run on the track. The stadium is one of the most recognizable symbols of Truman athletics, and the project will change it substantially.

Tim Schwegler, track and field head coach, says the plan is to change the shape of the track to make the field more functional. Schwegler says the current track has 100 meter straights and 100 meter curves, but it will change to a more European model with shorter straights and longer curves. Schwegler says this will not affect performance of runners but will widen it to make it possible for a soccer field to fit inside the track.

This will likely be the largest renovation to Truman’s athletic facilities for a while. Dave Rector, vice president of administration and finance, says the University will still do smaller projects, such as replacing score boards.

Rector said the funds for the project will come from money made by the student athletic fee. Each student pays $116 per academic year to the student athletic fund. Rector said some of the funding will come from savings built up by the athletic fee, while the rest will come from this year’s.

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