Starting Sept. 3, the soccer field at Saghalie Park will be under construction for new turf. Haley Donwerth/staff photo

Starting Sept. 3, the soccer field at Saghalie Park will be under construction for new turf. Haley Donwerth/staff photo

Saghalie Park gets new turf

A grant from the King County Council will help the city replace the turf field at the park this fall.

Saghalie Park is getting new turf.

Starting Sept. 3, a construction project will take over the turf soccer field at the park, replacing the worn-out turf with a new layer.

Director of Parks and Recreation for Federal Way John Hutton said it’s well past the time for the turf at Saghalie Park to be replaced.

Typically turf fields are guaranteed for about eight years, he said, with the full use of the field lasting for about 11 to 12 years.

Around the 12-year mark, the Saghalie Park turf is clearly showing its age.

“It’s expensive to install,” Hutton said, but the city doesn’t have to do the same upkeep to turf fields as they do to real grass fields.

Typically, Hutton said, where turf fields can be played on non-stop, grass fields can only have about 100 games played on them before they need to be replaced.

Council member Jesse Johnson said replacing turf fields is expensive, with the cost being around $700,000.

However, because of the money already set aside for this project, coupled with a $50,000 donation and a $250,000 grant awarded from the King County Council, the city will actually be saving $170,000 on this project.

Johnson said the Parks and Recreation Department already has $600,000 set aside for this project before the King County Council awarded the grant.

This turf replacement is entirely a city project, Johnson said, since the city owns and operates Saghalie Park rather than the school district.

A lot of events, such as track and soccer meets for elementary and middle schools in the area, are held at Saghalie Park, so Johnson said it’s a good thing the turf is getting replaced soon.

“We do host a lot of events there …” he said. “It’s just kind of time for that replacement there.”

Hutton said the replacement should take a total of six to eight weeks, so if everything goes according to schedule the new turf field will be open around the first week of November.

During construction, Saghalie Park itself will remain open to the public.

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