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Adding Luster to Your Facility Plan

Mike Lafferty offers four easy tips on how to increase your athletic facility's curb appeal.


1. Working with groundskeepers and facility crews, coaches, and booster club members when it comes to maintaining an athletic facility's attractiveness and usefulness: Sell the Plan.
ML: Everyone must buy in to your plans. Your grounds crew is of vital importance because enhancing an athletic facility may involve more work from them than what they are required to do. The same applies to your school's Building Services Department. Provide an occasional lunch to thank them for their help. Give them apparel to wear with pride. Acknowledge their efforts in writing to the PTSA or booster club newsletter and other publications. Most of all make sure to thank them. The kindness and appreciation you show towards them will have a direct impact on the way they view their jobs and the work that they do. They are important players on your team.


2. Simple things each group can do to ensure they are doing their part to maintain a facility's curb appeal: Get Rid of the Garbage.
ML: Teach students and parents to pick up trash. Involve school groups to help with projects for service learning opportunities. Educate your staff that "pride" is not just a word, but it is a mindset and a commitment. Develop a school improvement committee and a beautification committee. Let them be a part in generating ideas to help promote a more positive image of your school.


3. New products on the market today that appeal to athletic directors to enhance their facilities and school districts: Products that Light Up Your Message.
ML: There are many new products. The ones that I like are LED message boards. Dulaney does not have the funds nor have we established message boards as a priority at this time, but I am placing a message board in our building to help promote activities and to communicate the calendar. Centrally placed in our gymnasium lobby, this board will be seen by more students and visitors to our building than anywhere else in the school. I will spend approximately $5,000 for this equipment. However, the information that I will communicate, and the curb appeal that it will enhance is priceless.


4. Organizing the design phases of a facility project and how to manage publicity of it: Sign up for the NIAAA's LTC 516.
ML: A great deal must be considered before you can seriously move forward in beginning a project. LTC 516, "Administration of Physical Plant Assets and Facilities Management," covers a great deal of information pertaining to facility planning, funding sources, accessing your program's and facility's needs, developing the design team, selecting an architect, facility considerations, and much more. New construction, renovations, modular alternatives, and even stadium planning is covered in this course.



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