Courtesy of Butler University:
INDIANAPOLIS — Butler University will showcase $2.65 million in renovations to its football stadium, the Butler Bowl, this Saturday during the Bulldogs’ home opener against Taylor University.
The University expanded its grandstand seating to more than 5,600 seats and replaced a cramped wooden press box with a substantial brick structure. Costing $1.5 million, the new press box can accommodate 100. It features a VIP hospitality room, home and visitor radio booths, private booths for home and visiting coaches and increased space for print media and game operations. The top level houses a video booth and fan observation deck. Improvements were also made to the playing field.
Covering the Bowl’s west side, the home grandstand’s include 250 chair back seats – a first for the Bowl – plus 70 disabled accessible seating spaces. Seating for more than 430 was installed on the visitors’ side.
The renovations to the Butler Bowl are made possible by gifts to the ButlerRising capital campaign, and the Bulldog Club, Butler’s athletic booster program. Portions of the new facilities recognize former associate athletic director Don Benbow ’63 and the family of University Trustee Rick Cummings ’73, an executive with Emmis Communications. Additional naming opportunities are available.
“We are so grateful to our many donors who have made this facility possible,” said Athletic Director Barry Collier. “Our Butler coaches are excited to recruit to this first class facility, our student-athletes are excited about their new home, and the Butler family can be proud of this fine addition to our university.”
Butler’s men’s and women’s soccer teams also play home games at the Bowl.
Begun on April 18, Bowl renovations faced daunting weather obstacles: 57 rain days and 49 days when the temperature surpassed 90 degrees. “When the weather did cooperate, the VP Construction and Verkler Construction crews put in long hours to meet Butler’s goal of having everything ready for our first home game,” said Craig Hardee, Butler’s Senior Project Manager of Planning, Design, and Construction.” Also, the architects, Odle McGuire Shook, did a fabulous job on the design.”
The press box and grandstand walls echo architectural elements of nearby Hinkle Field House. And, the 145,000 bricks covering the press box noticeably match the bricks of the Apartment Village, an upperclassman residence built in 2006 abutting Bowl’s east edge.
“Butler has made the environmentally conscious choice to source construction materials locally whenever it can, so bricks for both projects came from Indiana Brick Corporation in Westfield,” Hardee said. “When we went looking for press box materials, we discovered that IBC still had bricks from the same lot created for the Village.”
Butler’s football team heads into Saturday’s 1 p.m. game with a 1-1 record. The 2009 team achieved an 11-1 season, a Pioneer Football League co-championship and the first postseason football win in Butler history.
About Butler University
Challenging and enabling students to meet their personal and professional goals has guided Butler University since 1855. Today, Butler is a nationally recognized comprehensive university that blends the liberal arts with first-rate pre-professional programs. It seeks to prepare each graduate not simply to make a living but to make a life of purpose, in which personal flourishing is intertwined with the welfare of others. Butler is known for its vibrant campus, superior academics and dedicated faculty. The University enrolls more than 4,400 undergraduate and graduate students in six academic colleges: Business, Communication, Education, Fine Arts, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Located just six miles from downtown Indianapolis, Butler’s urban setting affords students internship opportunities that provide excellent graduate school and career preparation.
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Contact: Mary Ellen Stephenson (Public Relations)
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Jim McGrath (Sports Information)