WARREN, NJ - A cork infill has been selected for the turf field by the Watchung Hills Regional High School Board of Education operations committee and the board agreed on the decision at its last meeting.

Different options were presented to the board at the prior meeting, including keeping the same black crumb rubber that is currently used and a thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) made of plastic pellets. 

The combination cork infill is cooler while also being organic.

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No action was necessary because this amount was included in the "not to exceed" $941,000 project cost, according to board member Peter Fallon.

“Within that cost, we decided to include the potential cost for the infill instead of just the straight black rubber we had on the last field,” said Fallon. “We got more input from Fiore ( Don Fiore the WHRHS architect) and he spent time reaching out to people using fields. We all know how hot that field gets when using the summer sun and the odor that comes off it can be overpowering.

“The cork product that has been recommended to us is not marketed as something that will have a difference in the health effects. But it is marketed as something that will cool down temperatures.”

“The members of the operations committee felt there was some utility to that coolness and it’s not a terrible expense at three to four percent of the whole project cost,” said Fallon. “So the committee is recommending we move forward with the cork layer infill.”