Midway ISD chose us to construct a new 97,000 SF athletic center that includes a full-size football field that can be converted for multiple teams’ uses.

Midway Student Activity Center – Waco, Texas

Project Description

This 97,204 square foot multi-purpose Activity Center provides Midway ISD with an indoor facility for football, baseball, soccer, band, cheerleading, dance, golf, weightlifting, and many other sports and non-sports related activities. It houses a full-size 100-yard football field with end zones, which is much larger than most comparable facilities. It has several motorized drop-down nets throughout the area to sanction off different activities so that more than one team can practice at the same time, and it has a cutting edge sound system that would rival the largest venues.

The main area is kept comfortable with rolling steel doors and high-powered exhaust fans to create a breeze during the warm days and heated with strategically located gas-fired unit heaters for winter time use. The area is well lit with wall skylights and energy efficient LED lighting on a  sophisticated  energy management system.

The floor of the main area is synthetic turf and is placed on a crown in the middle that replicates the effect of an actual stadium. This  building  also houses a state of the art, 11,000 square foot air-conditioned weight room for use by both girls and boys, with fully adjustable weight equipment and a special padded rubber floor, offices, equipment storage and restroom  facilities.

This facility has been visited by high school and college coaches from around the nation  and has been viewed as one of the finest facilities in existence.

The structure of this building is a pre-engineered metal building provided by Nucor Building Systems with “R” panel metal walls/CMU and a standing seam room system. The foundation is a slab on grade concrete foundation on drilled piers.

The height of the main portion  of this building is 65 feet at the  ridge. This created a challenge since most of the work was up high and had to  be done off of lifts due to the heights. There were as many as 20 boom lifts working in this area at one time.

Safety is always a major concern with a building of this magnitude. Pearson used several techniques to ensure that safety took precedence during construction. Pearson chose to  use the Silvercote Energy Saver insulation system in the roof which provided a reinforced liner for leading edge fall protection. This helped keep the project on schedule as well as workers safe during roof installation. During construction, the AGC safety director was employed to keep everything in order and Pearson is proud to note that there were zero incidents for everyone working on the project.

Working on the football field in a building meant having to build without a concrete slab to work from. Concrete grade beams and footings had to be poured for the steel structure, which only created a large mud hole when it rained until the building was fully enclosed. This delayed the project more than normal since this area inside was slow to dry. In one of the wettest years on record for Central Texas, this caused safety concerns and delays while working in these conditions. The mud made for unsafe and inefficient work conditions and was constantly being regraded to aid in drying and creating a level work surface.

In order to provide for a smooth surface on the interior as needed for athletics and not have any wasted space, this building was designed with the structural members on the exterior with the exterior skin inside. This is not your typical building design. However, it did create a smooth and straight line interior with an unusual offsetting exterior. This design doubles the surface area of the exterior skin and quadruples the amount of trim work. This took an enormous amount of additional time  to construct.

It took roughly ten months to finish the project which was completed on time. Students returning from their 2014-2015 winter holiday were greeted with a new state of the art multi-purpose facility. Multiple teams can now simultaneously practice various activities all at the same time and any time of the year. As the Midway athletics program seeks greatness on the field and off, all of their student competitors can now successfully prepare for it year-round.

Not only was the project finished on time but it was finished under budget. This $6.4 million project had a significant contingency allowance, but the team of Pearson Construction was able to return 80 percent of this amount to the school district.

In the end, the Midway ISD Athletic Center is nothing short of a masterpiece. The large water-jetted “M” cutout emblazons the tile floor in the entry, marking the threshold between mediocrity and distinction.

Fast Facts

  • Delivery Method: Hard Bid
  • Size: 97,204 SF
  • Start Date: February 2014
  • End Date: January 2016
  • Project Type: New Construction


Client Contact:
Dr. George Kazanas
Midway ISD

Architect Contact:
David Wright, A.I.A.