As Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C., transitions from natural grass to synthetic turf, some 5,000 tons of soil is being excavated from the playing surface that has served both the Carolina Panthers and the Charlotte Football Club and donated to six Mecklenburg County parks.
“This is another great example of our partnership with the Carolina Panthers to support our park facilities,” Lee Jones, director of Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation, told FOX affiliate WJZY in Charlotte.
As reported by WJZY, crews began digging up turf millings and root zone sand last week — enough to fill 300 truckloads. The material will be used to top dress softball and soccer fields, and perhaps help build a proposed cricket field. In addition, a portion will top dress tees at a new First Tee golf learning center.
“We’ve had a great relationship with Park and Rec for a long time,” Bank of America Stadium head groundskeeper Tom Vaughan added. “There aren’t too many places you can put 4,000 cubic yards of soil, so we’re excited that they can use it for projects that will serve the community.”
Jones told CBS affiliate WNCT in Greenville that the effort is about more than just recycling old soil. “It’s exciting for the kids to tell them, 'You are going to be able to play on this soccer field, and you know some of the greatest NFL players in history form the Panthers have played on this very dirt.'
“It’s going to really help us out at several different parks to really bring them up to par with what we need to have in terms of really good quality playing surfaces for our kids and good quality surfaces for growing."