Sandy Barbour: Beaver Stadium Could Be Replaced Or Renovated
Penn State Athletics announced today that it will begin producing a comprehensive Facilities Master Plan alongside architecture firm Populous that could see changes to or a complete replacement to Beaver Stadium.
According to the Associated Press, the stadium currently faces problems with outdated plumbing systems (that require annual winterization), elevators are small and sluggish, concourses are narrow, there are few concession options, and most of the seating is still bleachers. While all this feeds into the gameday atmosphere, it appears time for an update.
“Nobody’s trying to either renovate Beaver or build a new stadium just to be doing it,” Athletic Director Sandy Barbour told the Associated Press. “There’s a recognized need. I’ve not run into anybody that doesn’t recognize that need.”
Barbour does, however, recognize the tradition and history the stadium holds, and noted that her preference would be a renovation as opposed to a complete tear down and overhaul in order to uphold both. Populous plans to survey athletes, coaches, alumni, and fans to get the best grasp on what people want to see, while still keeping viability and cost in mind.
“Not only do we want to know what facilities would be best for our student athletes, these need to be economically viable,” said deputy athletic director Phil Esten. “Don’t show us a Cadillac if we can only afford a Chevy.”
Either way, the project is going to be a pricey one. Barbour is no stranger to expensive facilities upgrades — while at Cal, Barbour spent more on facility upgrades ($474 million) than any school in the history of collegiate athletics. Cal’s football stadium renovation was widely seen as a disaster.