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Archive for Saturday, August 11, 2007

Developer gets dirt from university

August 11, 2007

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Mount Oread's loss is Inverness Park's gain.

Tons of clay being removed from the base of Campanile Hill to make way for a new football complex at Memorial Stadium were being trucked this summer a little more than 4 miles away to its new home: a low-lying field southeast of Clinton Parkway and Inverness Drive.

It's the latest edition of a give-and-take that has been going on for years in development circles, as companies with extra dirt on their hands look for places to put it, and landowners with property needing a lift search for a boost.

In the end, both sides win.

"We had to get rid of it, and they needed it," Jenni Best, office manager for King's Construction Co. Inc., said in June. "We're just selling them some cheap dirt."

Oskaloosa-based King's Construction is close to wrapping up the excavating portion of its work at KU, clearing space for the lower level of the $31 million Anderson Family Football Complex, a building slated to provide 80,000 square feet for weight rooms, offices, an audio-visual room, meeting rooms, a hydrotherapy area, a nutrition area and a display area.

King's Construction also has a contract to build and overhaul parking lots on the west side of the stadium.

For the past month, dirt leaving the site in King's trucks - and others hired to help with the job - has been making its way into the southwestern portion of town, to an area known as Inverness Park.

The project, being developed by the Omaha-based Dial Cos., already includes The Legends apartment complex along the south side of 24th Street.

The dirt from near Memorial Stadium is being placed north of 24th, on property east of Inverness Drive.

Another contractor, LRM Industries Inc., is considering potential homes for the 8,000 cubic yards of dirt and clay that the company is removing from the east side of the stadium, where new football practice fields will be located.

"At this point we've identified a couple of places," Steve Glass, LRM president, said in June. "But I'm not in a position to publicly identify them yet."

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