Upgrade to Mansion Park lights OKd | News, Sports, Jobs – Altoona Mirror
Upgrades were approved for Mansion Park Monday night, with the Altoona Area School Board approving a $748,415 bid for new stadium lighting.
The project will be completed by Musco Lighting of Oskaloosa, Iowa, and school administrators said the new system will be a substantial upgrade over the current lighting at Mansion Park.
“The current bulbs at Mansion Park are over 30 years old, and the poles themselves are nearly 70 years old,” Superintendent Charles Prijatelj said. “We can’t put new lighting on those poles because we can’t guarantee the poles are even going to stay up. They need to be replaced and have aged out.”
The lighting project includes a base bid of $718,415 for six poles and lights that will be placed behind the bleachers.
The project also allocates $20,000 toward lighting at the practice field and an additional $10,000 for a show lighting package.
The bid from Musco was approved Monday night by a 5-3-1 vote, with board members Val Mignogna, Kelly Irwin-Adams and Stephanie McGinnis providing the dissenting votes. Board member Eric Haugh abstained from voting due to a conflict of interest.
Mignogna, who was just elected to the board in November, said his “no” vote was due to him not having enough insight and information about the project.
“When you join a board, you’re joining a moving train,” Mignogna said. “The board had already been talking about (new lighting), and I didn’t feel I had enough information or time to form a solid choice. This was too important of a financial decision.”
Mignogna said he “possibly” would have favored an alternate bid that included four poles, which was about $250,000 less.
He lives near Penn State Altoona, which has a stadium with four poles, and he said he thinks opting for four poles instead of six would have been sufficient.
“I thought four (poles) made sense,” Mignogna said. “In my experience seeing a stadium with four light poles and the cost difference, you can’t take things like that lightly. You’re elected into positions like this, and you have a responsibility to be smart fiscally. But I’ll learn more, and it’s just a matter of jumping in midstream and having to make a decision.”
The board received five bids for the project, with Musco offering three proposals and TPK Athletic Site Development offering two.
Irwin-Adams said her dissenting vote was due to all the bids offering different packages, stating during the meeting that, “We aren’t comparing apples to apples.”
“I am in favor of getting new lighting, but I just didn’t feel the bids were comparable,” she said. “I just wanted more information before approving.”
McGinnis declined comment.
Prijatelj said a system of six poles was the administration’s recommendation, adding that the six-pole system was sought to help control overflow lighting in the community surrounding Mansion Park.
A six-pole system, according to Prijatelj, will help limit the bulk of lighting to just the playing surface at Mansion Park, whereas four poles would shine light into surrounding residences.
“A six-pole system gives you …….
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