CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Kanawha County Board of Education has agreed to enter into a contract with a construction company to begin making upgrades to Laidley Field in Charleston in preparation for the state football championship games next Fall.

Renovations will be made to the University of Charleston Stadium press box and concession areas starting in mid-June. The lowest responsible bidder, Swope Construction, will conduct the work for a total of $2.875 million.

Andrew Crawford, Facilities Planning Executive Director for Kanawha County, said there’s already been progress made on the locker rooms.

“The north side is getting very close to complete,” he said. “We’ve been epoxying floors, repairing roofs and hanging new doors and frames.”

Old lockers have been thrown out. Crawford said the new lockers should be arriving sometime in July. The south side will get attention after work on the north side section is complete.

The WVSSAC Football Championships will return to Charleston and be there for at least the next three years. The City of Wheeling had hosted the state championship games since 1994.

The WVSSAC Board of Directors granted final approval to the City of Charleston back in February. The city had the winning bid among other proposals that included Wheeling Island Stadium, Bluefield’s Mitchell Stadium, and a combined bid from Huntington’s Joan C. Edwards Stadium and Morgantown’s Milan Puskar Stadium.

Paving is expected to begin sometime between June 16 and August 1 at Laidley Field. Crawford said June 16 is also the earliest start date for crews. Minor work may still be done by crews on site into August, but an estimated date for when the facility will be made functional is for around August 9.

The main parking lot will also be repaired. Areas underneath the bleachers will be resealed according to Crawford.

UC Stadium is the home to the Capital High School football teams. Crawford said work at Laidley shouldn’t affect Capital football practices and the facility should be ready for sure by the first game in August.

Laidley Field also hosts the WVSSAC Track and Field Championships.