Following years of discussion, planning and controversy, the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School this week submitted the first phase of a plan to renovate the school track and athletic fields.

The phase one plan was sent to the Oak Bluffs planning board Monday, which is expected to decide whether to refer the plan to the Martha’s Vineyard Commission for review as a development of regional impact (DRI).

The proposed upgrades include building a new eight-lane, 400-meter track around the main athletic field, which would be realigned and converted from grass to artificial turf. The plan, which has been aired and discussed previously by the school committee, calls for improvements on other grass fields as well and new facilities, including public rest rooms, a grandstand, concession stand and locker rooms. The designer is Huntress Associates of Andover.

The cost of the project is currently pegged at $7.7 million. Superintendent of schools Matthew D’Andrea has said the money will come from fundraising, although he has provided no details.
Planning board chairman T. Ewell Hopkins said this week that the plan tentatively will be discussed by his board on Feb. 27.

According to Mr. Hopkins, referral to the commission is not necessarily automatic.

“The big question is does this get referred or not,” he said. “Everybody has an opinion and until the five of us meet, that is not a settled decision,” Mr. Hopkins said.

The design is posted on the high school website.