The Western Michigan University Soccer Complex is currently undergoing a $75,000 renovation in which the existing surface is being removed and several upgrades are being made through the installation of a new playing field. The project is expected to be completed before the start of the fall season.
Fraze mowing, a process originally developed and perfected on European soccer fields, is being used to remove the top layer of the playing surface to correct issues with the field. The process will improve drainage and balance the playing surface, removing uneven slopes in the field. The surface will also be laser-graded to improve playability in wet weather.
In the final stages, the soil will be prepared for seed and new varieties of grass tailored specifically for soccer pitches will be introduced. The field will then be fertilized, top dressed and ready for play in 90 days upon completion.
Formally known as “Lee Baker Field,” the WMU Soccer Complex has seen extensive renovations over the last six years, transforming the complex into one of the finest in the Mid-American Conference and the Midwest.
Prior to the 2015 season, expanded bleacher seating was installed and a fully operational press box was constructed. In 2013, a paved parking lot with a new entrance and walkway were created where dirt and grass once stood. The complex received a new drainage system and new fencing, while back poles and netting were also put in place. A new mower was purchased that same year to keep the natural-grass playing surface at ideal height. Initial upgrades began in 2012 when the complex received new team dugouts and fencing to enclose the game field.