The view from inside Sun Devil Stadium (Image: ASU)
Sun Devil Stadium to get a major facelift -- more like a facial transplant.
Sun Devil Stadium has been a mainstay in the Valley for quite some time. However, it is getting old and needs a lot of work. Now is the time to do it. Instead of original thoughts of razing the stadium and either rebuilding it in its current location or where Kasrten's golf course is, recently promoted AD Steve Patterson announced that there are plans to renovate Sun Devil Stadium.
The new version of the stadium will seat less fans. SDS currently houses over 71,000. The renovated stadium would hold between 55,00-65,000. By reducing the number of seats, the value of the seats goes up and it allows a little more room for fans.
There will be major video and technological upgrades, and there is one major change. The stadium will be covered. It will not be a dome, but will rather have a an open-air covering. This will allow fans to more comfortably view the game at any hour of the day and give the school and the Pac-12 the scheduling flexibility it needs to televise games earlier if needed.
The north side of the stadium will provide a view of Tempe Town Lake.
As is natural with major renovations, ticket prices will go up. However, as noted, the value of those tickets will increase.
It is estimated that the project will cost approximately $300 million, and Patterson is targeting June for a financing plan. Renovations are planned to begin after the 2012 season is complete. Because of the location between the buttes, it will take some time and phases. Target for completion is prior to the beginning of 2017.
It is highly likely that for a couple of seasons the Sun Devils will have to play at a different venue. It would either be at Chase Field or University of Phoenix Stadium.
While the lower bowl renovations have not been announced, there is the hope that the student section can be increased and that the band would be next to the students.
The stadium overhaul will essentially complete the transformation of the athletic program. They have new uniforms, an expanded conference, a new athletic director, a new football coach and now they will have a new stadium. This should get the Sun Devil faithful excited and stir up some enthusiasm in the Sun Devil supporters who are not diehards.
Here are some photo renderings of how the stadium will look when completed.
Talk more about the stadium plans over at House of Sparky.