Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics has unveiled details for its Facilities Master Plan, with five priority projects for the next 20 years.
Penn State’s top two priorities both involve new construction, including the addition of a second indoor practice facility as well as a Centre of Excellence.
Longer term projects also include proposed renovations to Beaver Stadium. The master plan calls for substantial renovations to the stadium, which was constructed in 1960 and has expanded seven times, most recently in 2001.
The upgrades include a significant increase in chairback seating, new concessions locations and food options, new restrooms, wider concourses and additional premium seating options, which alumni and fans requested in surveys conducted during the master planning process.
Once the extensive renovation is complete, which will significantly improve fan amenities and experience, Beaver Stadium will have a capacity of at least 100,000, maintaining its stature as one of the nation’s largest and most iconic facilities. Improvements to the tailgating experience around Beaver Stadium also is included in the study.
Director of athletics Sandy Barbour said:
This Facilities Master Plan will have a huge impact over a significant period of time. It will have a huge impact on not only students and student-athletes in particular and their conditions for success, but across our entire community.
Central to the focus of an exhaustive 17-month study, Penn State partnered with Populous to develop its road map, designed to best enhance student-athlete academic and athletic performance and fan experience, among a variety of other needs.
With the mission to prepare students for a lifetime of impact, Penn State said its Centre of Excellence embodies all things central to creating conditions for success, providing a centralised location for student-athletes to continue to thrive.
Anticipated to be the new hub for Penn State’s 800 student-athletes, staff and coaches, the 450,000-square foot Centre of Excellence is set to be constructed in the location of the current East Area Locker Room.
Attached to the Centre of Excellence, plans for a proposed 108,000ft2 indoor practice facility similar to Holuba Hall, highlight the second priority project.
Penn State’s three other priority projects include the construction of a 10-lane, 50-metre Natatorium as well as a 10-court Indoor Tennis Facility.
Renovations and upgrades to Jeffrey Field, home of Penn State men’s and women’s soccer, also round out the projects falling in the next five-year capital plan, which is set to begin in the 2018-19 academic year.