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Stadium demolition underway

The scenery along Cedar Ave. in Demopolis is markedly different after the home-side stands at Memorial Stadium were leveled last week. The demolition is the first phase of a project that will provide the former home of the Demopolis High football team a fresh look.
“We’re going to correct the water problem that’s there. We’re going to make the visitors side the home side,” Demopolis City Schools Superintendent Dr. Al Griffin said of a project that will construct new stands on the opposite side of the field from where the old ones once stood. “We’re going to renovate the press box and renovate the restrooms and the concession stands. The middle school can use this for their home football games and so can the youth football league.”
The project provides a makeover for a stadium which saw its first game in the 1960s and its final high school game in the 2009 season when the Sweet Water Bulldogs hosted McIntosh in a game after being forced out of Nolan Atkins Stadium due to poor field conditions following inclement weather. Demopolis High School’s final game in the confines of Memorial Stadium took place Friday, Nov. 7, 2008 when the Tigers beat Sylacauga 56-35 in the second round of the Class 5A state playoffs.
Demopolis High has since moved its home games to Tiger Stadium, where DMS and the Demopolis Youth Football League have also begun to call home. Those moves left Memorial ripe for a facelift.
“It’s a pool of money that was allocated to Demopolis City Schools that had to be used for these types of entities,” Griffin said of the funding for the project. “It can’t be used on anything else.”
Griffin said there is no specific timetable set for completion of the project but indicated it would be completed before the 2011 football season.
“Once this wrecking company is done with the removal of the various materials from the demolition, we’ll begin to work through out architectural firm,” Griffin said. “The goal is (to finish the project) as quick as possible.”