North Texas

Argyle Practice Facility Set to Open 5 Months After Deadly Collapse

Less than half a year after back-to-back tragedies at the site, the Argyle Independent School District's newest facility is ready to open.

On Friday night a ribbon cutting ceremony is scheduled for the new Indoor Activity Center just outside of Argyle High School.

The facility will house indoor practice for football, marching band and other sports and also features state-of-the-art locker room and office space for coaches.

The building is also opening on time despite the rough and heartbreaking start for the community last spring.

On April 2 in the hours before school started for the day, the skeletal structure of the facility collapsed to the ground, killing construction worker Julio Ledesma and injuring three other workers.

Ledesma was a father of three employed by project subcontractor Warnick Metal Building.

Then, just five days later on April 7, a truck working at the site accidentally hit and killed 22-year-old worker Daniel Moran.

The incidents left the community shaken and led the Argyle ISD School Board to stop the work at the site for a safety evaluation.

Once that was complete, Superintendent Telena Wright said the construction team got back to work and even got permission from the city to work extended days with extra crews to hit the deadlines for the project.

As a result, the keys to the facility were turned over in late August, Wright said, and the finishing touches were being added Thursday for the public opening before the varsity football game Friday night.

"The hearts of the community are in the project," said Wright. "The community and students can be very proud of."

However, the unfortunate history at the site will not be forgotten.

On Thursday, crews planted two oak trees in front of the facility, and Write said markers will be added Friday night dedicating them as memorials to Ledesma and Moran.

Wright will also lead a short memorial for the two before the ribbon cutting and public tours of the building, starting at 6 p.m.

The public will also be able to tour the new baseball, softball and tennis facilities as well as upgrades and a new girls' field house at the football stadium.

All of the projects together were a part of a voter-initiated bond and total about $10.5 million.

As for the April construction collapse, Wright said it remains under investigation, and no update was available from Occupational Safety and Health Administration at the time of publication.

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