Photo by DAN HAMMOCK | GRAYS HARBOR NEWS GROUP
                                Upgrades are coming to Hoquiam’s historic Olympic Stadium. Here people line up to enter the stadium before the 2018 Loggers Playday competition.

Photo by DAN HAMMOCK | GRAYS HARBOR NEWS GROUP Upgrades are coming to Hoquiam’s historic Olympic Stadium. Here people line up to enter the stadium before the 2018 Loggers Playday competition.

Local firm tapped to identify, prioritize Olympic Stadium improvements

The City of Hoquiam has secured the architectural services of local firm Harbor Architects to identify and prioritize improvements to Olympic Stadium.

The 2019-21 State Capital Budget included a total of $515,000 for the stadium, and last month the Hoquiam City Council authorized Mayor Jasmine Dickhoff to sign the appropriation agreement with the State Department of Commerce, which administered the project. Monday, the council approved the agreement with Harbor Architects.

Hoquiam City Administrator Brian Shay said the city’s net gain from the funding was $504,000 after the State Department of Commerce collected its 2% administration fee.

The all-wood stadium on Cherry Street opened in 1938 and is currently the home of numerous Hoquiam youth and school sports events and the annual Loggers Playday competition. Olympic Stadium was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006.

Replacing the stadium’s fire sprinkler system is priority one, said Shay.

“We’ll put the sprinkler system out to bid first as a standalone,” said Shay. “Our goal is to get that out to bid as soon as we can.” The cost of the sprinkler system alone would be in the neighborhood of $200,000, estimated Shay.

The agreement with Harbor Architects is for $51,474. Aberdeen native Alan Gozart and his associates will survey the stadium and provide a prioritized list of how the left-over funds should be allocated after the sprinkler system upgrade.

“When we applied for the funding from the Legislature we keyed it on the sprinkler system and repairs to the siding, and painting, which is a big expense,” said Shay. “If you look at the stadium you see lots of places where siding is missing.”

There will be some structural repairs to be made as well.

“There are some rotten boards in the seating areas and some of the walkways are warped,” said Shay.

Shay said having a local firm like Harbor Architects is a big benefit to the project.

“Alan (Gozart) has done a lot of work at the stadium so he’s very familiar with it,” said Shay. “Aaron (Gozart), who works for him, is an (avid) baseball player and played many games in the stadium. They have a passion for the stadium.”

Aaron Gozart is also a native of Aberdeen and managed the recent overhaul of the Hoquiam library. That $1 million major upgrade to the historic library, built in 1911, was done last year.