Construction at Ranger Field to affect fans

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Construction at Ranger Field to affect fans

The ongoing construction of a new press box and fan convenience center at Ranger Field will present a few challenges for football fans of Northwestern Oklahoma State University and Alva High School during the 2014 season. The Ranger football team plays its first home game Saturday at 1 p.m. against Harding (Ark.).

Construction delays and a rainy summer have pushed back the timeline for completion of the project, and use of the facility during the 2014 season appears unlikely.

“We made the decision to move ahead with the project, knowing the possibility for use this season would depend on a perfect construction process, and that has not happened,” said Dr. Janet Cunningham, university president. “At the same time, we did not want to delay the progress of improving Ranger Field. The completed facility will be well worth the wait.”

The construction site, on the west side (home) side of Ranger Field, will be fenced off during games and campus police and other personnel will monitor the site to help keep fans a safe distance away.

In the past, young children used the area around the old press box as a play area, often times interfering with fans. The larger size of the new press box will put an end to that activity. Parents of young children will be asked to keep their children with them in the grandstand or in the tiered parking areas and away from the construction site and field area.

The concession area will be temporarily located on the west side of the locker room area. The selection of items available for purchase will be limited to drinks and a few snack and food items.

Another change will be the relocation of the handicapped parking and seating area from the southwest corner of the stadium to the southeast corner. Parking spaces and seating areas will be clearly marked.

Public restrooms will still be available on the north sides of the locker room and portable restrooms will be made available near the tiered parking areas.

In addition, all game management operations will be handled in the east side press box.

When completed, the new two-story press box will feature expanded restroom and concession/retail areas for fans, elevator, private suites and an expansive game management area. New audio upgrades for the stadium are also planned.