Arizona State University has committed more than $200 million to renovate Sun Devil Stadium in Spring 2015.
According to an ASU athletics press release, the school will invest $210 million to put in a new video board and sound system, more bathrooms, the installation of seats and benches with backing and other amenities.
“The plan to renovate Sun Devil Stadium gives ASU an opportunity to increase our investment in the community and to set the standard for collegiate athletics facilities,” ASU President Michael Crow said in the release, ”We will need philanthropic support from our community in order to provide features that will take the game experience to a new level.“
In addition to the $210 million ASU investment, an additional $50 million is being raised through private donations and a public campaign. Taxpayer dollars will not be used because the renovation will be self-funded and new revenue streams will pay for the renovations, according to the press release.
“Sun Devil Stadium is the cornerstone of the legacy and tradition of Arizona State football,” said head football coach Todd Graham in a press statement.
Sun Devil Stadium will go through a complete transition, while preserving the Tillman Tunnel and its location. Houseofsparky.com reports each Sun Devil game brings in a reported $10 million to the Valley economy.
Moving football games to a different location would negatively impact Tempe economy, player and fans game-day experience, as well as ASU students close proximity to view games, according to fan feedback.
“It was important to keep intact that same tunnel that Pat Tillman ran onto the field from on game day,” Graham said, “This venue will blend that tradition with all the elements of a top-tier facility and put us at the top of the league.”
Fan feedback from surveys and focus groups suggested adding a shade canopy, an additional $132 million cost. Although the shade canopy was excluded from the renovation plan, fans still undoubtedly support the upcoming renovations.
“I think the new renovations are a good idea because it’s time for a new change of scenery,” said ASU student Cody Fincher.
Fincher, who is also a season ticket holder, said he’s glad games will not be played at a different location noting, “If ASU decided to shut down Sun Devil Stadium for the renovations I probably wouldn’t buy season tickets.”
Fincher said he liked the college atmosphere of Tempe and the easily accessible light rail to and from games.
Sun Devil Stadium’s last major renovation added 1,700 seats in 1988.