When it opens in fall 2014, Baylor's McLane Stadium will be arguably the most dynamic college football stadium in America. The $250 million on-campus stadium is under construction on a 93-acre site at the intersection of Interstate 35, one of the nation's busiest highways, and the Brazos River, the longest waterway in the state of Texas.
McLane Stadium will seat a capacity crowd of 45,000 and will feature a bridge crossing the Brazos connecting to a stadium mall that welcomes alumni and guests as they move from campus into the facility. In addition to moving football games to the Baylor campus for the first time since 1936, the McLane Stadium project is expected to help stimulate riverfront development, revitalize downtown Waco and bring jobs and economic development to the region.
Transformational gifts from prominent alumni helped move the stadium toward reality. Stadium Founders Elizabeth and Drayton (BBA'58) McLane Jr. and their sons Drayton McLane III (BBA'96) and Denton McLane (BBA '99) provided the leadership gift, starting a new era in Baylor Athletics. Stadium Founder John Eddie Williams Jr. (BBA '76, JD'78), a former Baylor football player, and his wife Sheridan, made a gift naming John Eddie Williams Field at Baylor Stadium. A gift from Sheila and Walter Umphrey (BBA '59, JD'65) will fund construction of the Sheila and Walter Umphrey Pedestrian Bridge that will span the Brazos. Stadium Founders Paul (BBA'70) and Alejandra Foster, Clifton (BBA'63) and Betsy (BA'73) Robinson, Jim (BBA '69) and Julie Turner and Baylor Health Care System, and Bob (BBA '70, MBA'71) and Janice Simpson also made significant gifts that propelled construction and began a new chapter in Baylor's storied history.
The contractor for the project is a partnership between Austin Commercial-Flintco LLC. The companies have worked on such Big 12 football facilities as Oklahoma State's Boone Pickens Stadium, Oklahoma's Gaylord Family Memorial Stadium and TCU's Amon G. Carter Stadium.
The architect for the project is Kansas City, Mo.-based Populous, which has designed some of the world's premiere athletic venues including Yankee Stadium in New York, Houston Astros Minute Maid Park, Wembley Stadium in London, Soccer City in Johannesburg, and Heinz Field in Pittsburgh among many others.