PanStadia & Arena Management Magazine is the undisputed world leader for the business of stadia, arenas, sporting events and venues on a global scale.

Populous plans Beaver Stadium renovations

Penn State Athletics and architect Populous have begun work on the next steps to determine the future of Beaver Stadium in Pennsylvania.

This planning study follows the work done by Populous and Pennsylvania State University as part of the ICA Facilities Master Plan, which was announced in March 2017.

The study will review and evaluate current and upcoming required major maintenance projects, as well as investigate renovation options to improve fan comfort and provide a greater variety of amenities to support the evolving needs of the student-athletes, fans and campus community.

Vice president for intercollegiate athletics Sandy Barbour said:

We are excited to work with Populous, led by Penn State letterman Scott Radecic and alum Jeff Funovits, on this important project in our Facilities Master Plan. Our team is looking forward to the feedback from our user groups in order to create the roadmap for the necessary and desired renovations   as well as to maximise the value that Beaver Stadium brings to our campus and community.

Populous will conduct an inclusive study with a wide range of stakeholders from the campus and community. Flowing from that work will be recommendations to address Beaver Stadium’s near- and long-term maintenance needs, operational efficiencies, partnership opportunities as well as improvements to the fan and student-athlete experience.

The Populous team is led by a pair of Penn State alumni: Scott Radecic ’86 and Jeff Funovits ’89. Populous senior principal and member of Penn State’s 1982 National Championship team Radecic said:

It’s both a personal and professional honour to work with Penn State again. Our relationship with the university and ICA goes back 25 years, but it’s always been the forward-looking nature of our work that has been the most rewarding.

Funovits, Populous principal and planner, added:

Years after my first game as a freshman, I still hear the chants of “We are” echoing off the seating bowl at Beaver Stadium. We’re thrilled to help make the stadium a bucket list destination and memory maker for generations to come.

The study is expected to last through the summer of 2021.

In 2016, Penn State Athletics collaborated with Populous to develop and produce a comprehensive Facilities Master Plan to address needs for the Nittany Lions for the next 20 years. The master plan created a strategy to address year-around needs that will deliver a combination of new and renovated venues, enhancing the game day experience and integrating the facilities within the University Park campus in a more intentional manner.

The master plan called for substantial renovations to Beaver Stadium, which was constructed in 1960 and has expanded seven times, most recently in 2001.

The upgrades propose 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.