The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents has approved revised design phase plans and updated programming information for a new $22 million softball facility.
The new softball home will be located approximately half a mile south of the current facility. This plan alters the previous masterplan for renovation of the present location to allow space for implementation of the required programmatic facility elements, make further use of adjacent athletics facilities and take advantage of existing parking in the immediate vicinity.
OU vice president and athletics director Joe Castiglione said:
We have spent a considerable amount of effort reviewing this project and working to achieve the best possible result. We determined that this was the best route to take in developing a facility that not only rates among the best in the nation, but fits with our other athletics sites located in the same vicinity.
While we’re pleased with the planning phase, we must now turn to our support base and seek the funding assistance we need to bring this project to fruition. I am confident we can build a sustainable financial model.
The new stadium is projected to seat 3,000 fans, more than double the capacity of the current facility.
In recent years, the current OU Softball Complex has been stretched beyond its seating capacity of 1,378.
On May 26, with the addition of temporary bleachers, a record crowd of 1,927, one of 18 sellouts during the 2018 season, watched the Sooners defeat Arkansas 9-0 in the NCAA Super Regional championship game. That kind of interest has stressed not only the seating capacity, but also the services available to those visiting the facility. It is projected that the new facility will have capacity for 3,000 fans.
In terms of other fan amenities, the current concept, which is subject to updates and alterations, includes three concessions stands with a total of 11 points of sale (an increase of nine) and six restrooms (an increase of 60 fixtures).
Other changes include a 10,000ft2 indoor practice facility, which is nearly double the size of the current facility, and several team spaces including a training room, locker room and classroom.