Construction Begins on Two New Athletic Fields

Come this fall, Rivers School athletes will have two new artificial turf fields to play on, thanks to a small group of donors whose generosity has made it possible for the school to undertake and complete the construction project in just four months.

“Although our 2015 Strategic Plan includes an objective to build new fields, we wouldn’t have been able to tackle this project at this time had it not been for a group of community members who stepped forward to provide us with the funds needed to begin construction immediately,” says Head of School Ned Parsons. “Thanks to their generosity and their strong desire to get these fields built sooner rather than later, our student athletes and their fans will be able to enjoy new fields this fall.”

The two new playing fields will replace two smaller grass fields that sit in front of the MacDowell Athletic Center, adjacent to Winter Street. (Click here to see a full artist’s rendering of the new fields.)

Once completed, the new fields will be used by the football, field hockey, soccer, and lacrosse teams, as well as by Rivers Middle School teams. The project includes the construction of a covered pavilion between the two new fields that will be outfitted with seating and restrooms. It will serve as both a community gathering space and a fan viewing area.

The construction of the new fields represents another exciting campus improvement project for Rivers, which is already in the midst of building the new Center for Science and Visual Arts, a 34,000-square-foot academic facility that is scheduled to open its doors in January 2020. In addition, Rivers has developed plans to renovate its Black Box theater and is in the preliminary stages of planning renovations to two other campus buildings, Prince and Lewis. Space in those buildings will be freed up once the new Center for Science and Visual Arts opens, creating the opportunity to renovate so as to better serve the needs of both the Middle School and the Upper School’s humanities programs.

“This is an exciting moment in our school’s history,” says Parsons. “We are making capital improvements that will have long-term implications for our academic and athletic programs and that will solidify Rivers’s position as a top-tier educational institution. I am so grateful to our extended Rivers community of parents and alumni whose generous support and whose belief in our educational mission makes all of this possible.”

—Stephen Porter