Tag Archives: Pacific-12 Conference

U. of Arizona Unveils Stadium Expansion and Football-only Facility

The preseason crawl of college football stadium construction projects travels to Tucson where earlier this month the University of Arizona opened the Lowell-Stevens Football Facility at Arizona Stadium.  Built for $72.3 million with private donations from David and Edith Lowell and Jeff and Sharon Stevens, the new integrated stadium complex helps the Rich Rodriguez-led football program join the all-out Pac-12 facilities throwdown to impress recruits. Thank you, Phil Knight.

Similar to projects at Mississippi State and Kansas State, consider the Arizona Stadium expansion a partial upgrade rather than a tear-down, do-over remodel. The modern four-story Lowell-Stevens Facility permanently encloses the north end zone and adds 4,200 seats to boost capacity over 56,000. Inside Lowell-Stevens, the site offers first-class amenities, including: a private club area (the Sands Club), a welcome center, locker rooms, a 4,500-square foot weight room, advanced medical facilities and direct walking access onto the field.

These facility upgrades send a strong message of commitment to alumni, but  they’re also expected by top recruits. For Arizona, projected to finish near the bottom of the Pac-12 South, they might need all the help they can get this season to impress recruits and give fans reason to combat the heat.

Check out the zoomable camera at the Lowell-Steven facility web page. Also, I found two Arizona Athletic Department videos below: the first a recap of the grand opening and the latter an earlier look at the construction site with Coach Rodriguez as your tour guide.

Videos and Photo Credit: University of Arizona

Husky Stadium renovation nears completion

On September 7 one of college football’s loudest and most picturesque stadiums will re-open after a two-year, $260 million renovation project. The University of Washington Huskies Stadium host the Boise State Broncos at the updated Husky Stadium, giving fans a chance to renew their love affair with the beautiful stadium on Lake Washington.

Artistic rendition of the University of Washington's new Husky Stadium

Artistic rendition of the University of Washington’s new Husky Stadium

Under construction since 2011, the new stadium capacity is slightly smaller, dropping 600 seats from 72,500 to 71,900. Perhaps the most significant change to Husky Stadium was the removal of the running track surround the field. Similar to renovations at the Los Angeles Coliseum and Stanford Stadium, Husky Stadium was the only remaining Pac-12 stadium with a running track and its removal lowers the bowl four feet and bring fans closer the field.

The iconic cantilever roofs built to protect fans from typically rainy conditions on north and south sidelines have been retained, which is unwelcome news to visiting teams. Husky fans have created an ear-piercing home field advantage using these roofs and fans in the “Dawg Pound” are eager to continue the tradition in their new home.

Spacious new concourses surround the stadium and a new football operations building including new locker, weight and team meeting rooms await the team and coaches in the revamped west end zone. The south end zone’s former temporary-looking aluminum bench bleacher seats are replaced by permanent seating to create a bowl.

The cantilever roof was removed during stadium demolition, but an updated roof was installed.

The cantilever roof was removed during stadium demolition, but an updated roof was installed.

During the 2012 season when Husky Stadium was renovated, the team played a Qwest Field, home of the NFL Seattle Seahawks. Kansas City-based stadium architect firm 360 Architects designed the new look Husky Stadium.

To check out what the finished product is expected to look like, take the virtual stadium tour  or visit the stadium construction web cam to see the latest action at the stie.