Regional track and field facility in Danville one step closer to reality

Danville sports tourism committee has recommended building a facility

DANVILLE, Va. – A track and field facility is one step closer to reality in Danville.

The Mayor's Committee on Sports Tourism has recommended to city council that a facility be built.

Averett University is interested in partnering with the city on the project so that the facility could be used to start an Averett track and field program.

Currently, there is no usable track in Danville.

The track at George Washington High School is in such disrepair that it cannot be used.

The track at Langston Focus School is not designed to host track and field events.

Averett University Institutional Advancement Vice President Buddy Rawley estimates a track and field program would attract close to 100 extra students to the university.

"It would be huge for Averett to add another 60-90 students. Then, you've got to hire three to five Ph.D.s to teach. We're probably even looking at more dormitory space," Rawley said. "So it would be really big for us."

While no official timeline has been set for the design and construction of a track and field facility, Rawley said he envisions the university's track and field program starting in 2020.

Now that city council has received a recommendation to build a facility, the next step is for the council to vote on the recommendation.

Danville City Manager Ken Larking said he anticipates a vote being taken at the second city council meeting in May to appropriate money to be used for engineering work to determine where a facility should be built.

He said the city currently has $1.3 million already set aside that could be used.

Whatever money is left over after the engineering work could be used to help pay for design and construction of the facility. 

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