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Exceptional season capped off with stadium announcement

Dec. 13, 2011

Exceptional season capped off with stadium announcement

Baylor unveils rendering of potential on-campus football stadium

The morning of Baylor football's Homecoming win over Missouri, the university released a conceptual drawing of what a new, on-campus football stadium could look like (see image above).

The rendering is just a first look at what could be the next phase of a thriving athletics program built on the foundation of success in the past years.

An on-campus stadium was among the most-mentioned single items when public input was gathered for Baylor's new strategic plan. The preferred site is on the Brazos River, adjacent to I-35 across from the law school and the Highers Athletic Complex.

The university is working with Populous (formerly HOK Sport), an architectural firm known for its work on such stadiums as Camden Yards in Baltimore, the new Yankee Stadium in New York, Reliant Stadium in Houston, Heinz Field in Pittsburgh and TCF Bank Stadium, home to University of Minnesota football.

The rendering was simply a concept of what features a Baylor stadium might include. The architect's preliminary vision is for a 45,000- to 50,000-seat stadium, open on one end to look out across the Brazos at the Baylor campus, with a red-brick exterior to match Baylor's campus architecture. A foot bridge would span the river to allow fans and students to walk freely to and from campus and boat service would offer access to the stadium as well. The project is expected to have a total price tag of about $250 million.

Of course, while such details are interesting, it's important to note that the project is still in the preliminary stages; this discussion will continue in the coming months. There is no timeline for construction; the next step is to analyze the results of a feasibility study conducted in November, which will help answer questions such as seating capacity, number of suites and other amenities.

It will take a strong showing of support from the Baylor family -- not only vocal support, but financial support as well -- to keep the project moving forward. But the release of the drawing shows progress on this project, and it gives Baylor fans quite a bit to dream about.

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