Getting maximum use from a sports facility is a common consideration for many within the education sector. So, with regular bad weather rendering its existing double pitch out of action for much of the winter, the International School of Prague (ISP) recently looked to a solution that would provide adequate playing time all year round.
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Due to soil type and weather conditions, the school’s natural grass facility had to be closed from November until March each year. During that time the pitch was unusable, forcing staff to take lessons or extracurricular activities elsewhere for a significant portion of the academic calendar.
Recognising the problem, ISP began to work on a solution that would not only extend its own use of the space, but enable it to open out the facility to others in the local area. The school appointed specialist contractors, A Sport Produkt, to lend their expertise to the project.
With ISP needing a high quality football product that would also serve for a multitude of other sports, the group specified TigerTurf’s Premier Pro 60. Built to conform to the FIFA Quality Pro mark, the impressive design of the artificial grass surface meant the school could benefit from the exceptional performance needed, as well as up to 38 hours playing time each week.
As the first full-size installation of one of TigerTurf’s 3G surfaces in the Czech Republic, the project was an instant success across the two pitches. Immediately, the school was able to get more from the space, with the facility now open every day during the academic year. Better still, ISP soon began to receive offers from local sports clubs and community groups who were interested in using the surface.
As interest in further rentals continues to grow, this has opened up a new revenue stream for the school – enabling a quick return on its investment.
Joe Monks, the school’s Activities Director, commented: “Our old field could only be used during the school day between September and November, before it was then closed until March. It was clear we needed a new, multi-use games area to accommodate the school’s growing sport offering for a longer period of the academic year.
“This versatility was key when it came to designing the new double pitch. Instead of two football pitches, we went for a combination of colours and lines to maximise the possibilities for use.
“The new sports field is now open every day of the school year, even in the winter and after bad weather. On top of that, the facility has attracted numerous sports clubs that we now rent it out to. At the moment, the additional revenue we make from the pitch stands at around £5,000 a year, which helps to offset ongoing maintenance costs and ensure we can keep the facility in perfect shape.”