On Tuesday, Arizona State announced its plans to officially begin renovations on 56-year-old Sun Devil Stadium, with the university committing to invest $210 million toward the project.
Included in the university’s press release was news of a public fundraising drive — the Sun Devil Stadium Momentum Campaign, namely — which seeks to bring in $50 million in private donations, helping to complete renovations.
The stadium, which ASU president Michael Crow called a Valley landmark on Tuesday, will undergo a complete renovation, remaining in the Tempe/ Hayden Buttes and keeping Tillman Tunnel intact.
Meanwhile, upgraded amenities, more legroom, backs on seats and benches, and a higher number of restrooms are among the highlights of the new Sun Devil Stadium. Construction on the stadium is scheduled to begin in 2015 and ASU will play its home games at Sun Devil Stadium throughout the project, rather than uprooting its contests to Chase Field, as had been previously announced.
Originally, the addition of a shade canopy was included in renovation plans, but the estimated $132 million cost of the structure — and the fact that it would prohibit fireworks — caused the university to exclude it from the rebuild.
The Sun Devil Stadium Momentum Campaign will forgo taxpayer dollars, relying instead on new momentum streams and private donations, as mentioned by Crow in the university’s release.
“We will need philanthropic support from our community in order to provide features that will take the game experience to a new level,” he said.
Having previously hosted the Super Bowl, the Fiesta Bowl, nearly 150 NFL games and, most recently, the Pac-12 Championship, Sun Devil Stadium hasn’t undergone a major renovation since 1988, when it added 1,700 seats.
The new Sun Devil Stadium will seat 60,000 — more than 10,000 fewer than its current capacity of 71,706.
The north end zone will be removed next month, as was originally announced in the fall of 2013.