Washington High School breaks ground on $2.5 million outdoor athletic field in Sherman Park

NOW: Washington High School breaks ground on $2.5 million outdoor athletic field in Sherman Park

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A new outdoor athletic field is coming to Washington High School in the Sherman Park neighborhood. Milwaukee Public Schools is breaking ground on a $2.5 million project that district leaders say will benefit students and the community.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held Thursday, marking the start of the project. The field will be a multi-purpose space with a new synthetic turf playfield for football and soccer, a 400-meter track, and two new basketball half-courts.

"It isn't just schools in our suburban communities but schools right here in Milwaukee also deserve that sort of high-quality facilities," said Mayor Cavalier Johnson.

Officials say the road to make all this happen has been a long one.

Alex Hardy, Community Baptist Church Deacon and member of community organization, Common Ground, expressed his excitement during the groundbreaking ceremony.

"Common Ground and Washington High School family experienced major challenges bringing this dream into reality but we never gave up. We met with many groups and individuals explaining the plan to renovate the field and asking for financial contributions," said Hardy.

Over the last seven years, Common Ground raised more than $830,000 from 144 donors. The rest of the money is made possible through a partnership with MPS and MPS Foundation.

"Exciting times to be able to offer this for our young athletes," said Dr. Keith Posley, MPS Superintendent.

Student athletes say they're hopeful the new field will bring out more fans to their games.

"I'm very excited. We finally get to play at home, where our community is instead of going to other fields," said Christopher Blue, Sophomore Football Player at Washington High.

The project completion date is estimated for Fall of 2023.

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