SBD/July 23, 2014/Facilities

LSU To Make $14M Off Club-, Suite-Level Seats In Stadium Expansion; Rice Eyes Upgrades

Two LED ribbon boards were added as part of the south end zone expansion
LSU will "make an additional" $14M from the south end zone expansion of premium seats at Tiger Stadium, and AD Joe Alleva yesterday said that all seats in the club and suite levels "are sold," according to Ross Dellenger of the Baton Rouge ADVOCATE. Completion of the addition is set for Aug. 22, and LSU "showed off its multimillion dollar makeover to 90-year-old Tiger Stadium" yesterday, "ushering reporters around the 320,000-square-foot addition." Between the 40-foot-high HD video screens are "two ribbon LED boards stretching from one end of the new expanded end-zone section to the other." One board is "stripped above the club level and another below one of the suite levels." The ribbon boards on the east and west sides of the stadium will be "replaced to match the new ribbon boards." The boards will be a "place for advertisements, closed captions, score updates and more." The "exterior of the new expansion will be illuminated in purple and gold lighting to match the exterior of the north end zone" (Baton Rouge ADVOCATE, 7/23). 

JOE MOVING DIRT: Rice Univ. AD Joe Karlgaard said the school is "closing in" on $30M needed to begin a multi-phase renovation of Rice Stadium. In Houston, Joseph Duarte noted the original design "called for an 80,000 square-foot facility -- which includes a locker room, team meeting and training areas, and coaches offices -- at a cost" of about $44M. But since then, Karlgaard said that university and athletic officials "have 'backtracked' to accommodate a scaled-down version that will include a 60,000 square-foot facility at a lower cost without sacrificing any of the amenities." The lower cost will "allow Rice to allocate other donations toward the rest of the stadium renovations while still constructing what Karlgaard said will be a 'Big 12-caliber' end zone facility" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 7/21).  

LIFE IN DEATH VALLEY: In South Carolina, Aaron Brenner noted the Clemson Univ. Board of Trustees on Friday "gave its final approval to renovate all Memorial Stadium suites." The project is "estimated to cost" $25M, which will be "funded via revenue bonds." It is "scheduled to be finished" in time for the '15 football season. This will be the "first large-scale renovation to the suites in 20 years" (Charleston POST & COURIER, 7/19). Sports architect AECOM is designing the stadium upgrades as well as $40M in improvements to Clemson’s Littlejohn Coliseum (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 7/21 issue).

HURRICANE WARNING: In West Palm Beach, Matt Porter noted the Univ. of Miami this summer "revamped its football practice fields, installing a 70-yard artificial turf surface and upgrading two full-size grass fields with a new drainage system, addressing a problem that forced the Hurricanes to periodically practice on its soccer and baseball fields." By October, the basketball teams will "get some love" with a $1M video board in the BankUnited Center (PALM BEACH POST, 7/21).  
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