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New ETX stadium in good shape, despite sharing architect with troubled Allen stadium

Pine Tree Pirate Stadium. Source: KLTV Staff. Pine Tree Pirate Stadium. Source: KLTV Staff.
LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - A state-of-the-art East Texas football stadium is under the microscope after another new stadium designed by the same architect had to close for repairs. 

Tuesday, Allen Independent School District in Northeast Texas announced that their $60 Million football stadium would be closed this fall. The school district said, less than two years after the stadium opened, cracks in the concrete were cause for concern.

District leaders at Pine Tree ISD say, even though they used the same architect as Allen ISD, the Pine Tree Pirate Stadium is still in tip-top shape . However, that isn't stopping them from keeping a close eye on things.

"I'm looking at the concrete around the columns. There are no cracks associated with those. The brick work... no cracks around the brick work," explains Pine Tree ISD Facility Services Director Tony Hollins.

No cracks means no bad news for PTISD. Hollins says he started inspecting Pirate Stadium long before Allen ISD started having problems. "We're just doing what we would do in any new construction project," Hollins adds. "I'm happy to say, at this time and as of today, we have nothing to be concerned with at our stadium," says PTISD School Board President Patrick Noon.

Meanwhile, 140 miles to the West, Allen ISD doesn't have the same good news to report. Cracks in the stadium's concrete revealed design and construction flaws. One concourse does not meet weight-bearing code and some parts of the stadium are 10-20 percent, even 70 percent, deficient.
"This isn't a black eye for this school district. This is really a black eye for the contractor and the architect," says Allen ISD Superintendent Lance Hindt.

The architect AISD used,  PBK, is the same architect that Pine Tree ISD hired to design pirate stadium, but the big difference is the stadiums themselves. "It is my understanding that the Allen stadium has an upper concourse...which ours does not," explains Hollins. "As you know, we constructed one of the best stadiums in East Texas and we're very proud of it," says Noon.

Pirate Stadium opened in the fall of 2014 and is used all year long. Fundraisers, relays and band competitions are just some of the events the sparkling new stadium hosted this spring. Community members say they're looking forward to more events at the stadium thanks to their crack-free finished product.

According to district officials, Pine Tree's Pirate Stadium is still under warranty through the summer. When that warranty ends, the district says they're covered by additional design insurance. The district also says they might have an independent inspector take a look at the stadium to reinforce their belief that there's nothing to worry about.

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