By Jaimie Julia Winters
winters@montclairlocal.news

The bleachers at Woodman Field should be welcoming fans by the next Montclair High School football home game.

Half of the bleachers were shut down for Montclair’s Sept. 22 home game against East Orange after an inspection showed “excessive rust,” to the east side of the stands past the press box, said Superintendent Kendra Johnson.

The district attempted to get the bleachers repaired before the game, but a vendor was not available until Tuesday, Sept. 25 .Work was was further delayed due to rain, which extended the repairs through last weekend.

“[All] bleachers will be continuously inspected to ascertain any additional repairs. To date, this repair was most pressing,” said Johnson.

Johnson did not say who the district retained as the contractor, but estimated the cost to be between $7,500 to $8,000.

Montclair’s next home football game is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 13, against Bloomfield.

At a Nov. 29, Board of Estimate meeting, Fortunato turf and Woodman track projects were several potential upgrades and repairs discussed for the high school athletic facilities, one of which was replacing the bleachers at Woodman. The cost was $1.3 million and included soil abatement.

In January, the project list was pared down to just Fortunato and the track in the short term.

The Montclair Town Council approved a $3.4 million bond measure during its March 20 meeting to replace the turf at Fortunato Field and the track at Woodman.

The bulk is earmarked for renovations at the two sports facilities with $1.5 million going towards replacing the turf at Fortunato Field and $1.1 million for an upgrade and replacement of the track at Woodman.

The remaining $791,000 is to be used for a HVAC rehabilitation project at the Watchung Annex.

In July, bids were rejected on the Woodman track project.