Middletown City Schools are in the final stages of flipping its high school campus as it moves the location of its track stadium from one end to another.
The stadium construction is now taking place on the northern side of the 40-acre, Middletown High School and Middle School campus about 100 yards from where the track used to stand.
The track and field stadium will seat 600 and feature state-of-the-art track expected to be ready for the upcoming spring track season, said city school officials.
More importantly the new athletic facility will finish the $96 million school construction project that is the largest and most ambitious in Middletown Schools’ history. And, said school officials, it will put the finishing bow on what is now one of the city’s community centers.
“The new Middletown 7-12 campus is a supporting piece to the revitalization efforts of the City of Middletown — this is a true community facility,” said the district’s superintendent, Marlon Styles Jr.
“With our new athletic arena, state-of-the-art, 200-seat community room, brand new track and field, and renovated fine arts wing, we’ve extended an open invitation to the community. The community supported us, so it was a no-brainer to open our facilities to everyone,” said Styles.
The track and field stadium will also feature a multi-purpose, artificial turf field, another first for Middletown’s spring sports.
George Long, business manager for the 6,300-student city schools, said “as far as timeline we will be using it in the spring. If the weather cooperates, it should be completed by the end of November.”
The new campus, which includes the 2,200-seat Wade E. Miller Arena that opened to city-wide fanfare in December, also now sports new signage.
The main high school and middle school sign at 601 North Breiel Blvd. now features an electronic sign flashing informational messages and greetings.
And the long-awaited Manchester Road entrance is now open, allowing easier traffic access and departures from the campus.
Elizabeth Beadle, spokeswoman for the schools, said annual events like the “Middie Olympics” — formally Middletown Special Olympics held at the district’s Barnitz Stadium — will take place in May on the new track and field.