With months remaining until its first game, construction on the new Colorado State stadium continues to make steady progress.
The 2017 NCAA college football season will be the Colorado State Rams’ first in their new on-campus stadium. Originally expected to open in September, the facility’s debut will now take place on August 26, thanks to a scheduling change that was announced in March.
As construction continues, officials are expected next week to receive more information on the stadium’s progress. During a meeting on May 2, Colorado State president and chancellor Tony Frank will brief the university system’s board of governors on the ongoing construction process. A draft of the report that will be presented that day shows that the stadium’s construction budget currently stands at $222.1 million, including $5.8 million in contingency funds, a change from the $221.7 million budget with $7.7 million in contingencies that was presented in February.
The report is expected to deliver positive news when it comes to corporate backing for the stadium. Though Colorado State is still looking for a stadium naming rights partner, corporate support has been strong in other areas. More from The Denver Post:
The report to the board again will detail that despite the lack of a naming-rights partner, the total commitments in sponsorships already have exceeded the most optimistic projections the board considered when it gave the go-ahead to the project in December 2014.
“I don’t think anyone on campus is going to apologize for where we’re at,” [athletic director Joe] Parker said. “It would be nice to know what we’re going to call the facility, but right now everyone seems more or less fine with the stadium, the new stadium, the on-campus stadium. We debated for a while a little bit internally if we wanted to make it institutional branding as far as ‘Colorado State Stadium’ or something like that, but we decided not to do that. That would have been an investment of dollars that we might be redoing in the near future if we secure a naming-rights partner.”
An anonymous $20 million commitment over 30 years to transfer the Sonny Lubick Field designation from Hughes Stadium to the new stadium was crucial, as were major commitments from New Belgium Brewing for a Fan Deck and from the Orthopaedic and Spine Center of the Rockies for a Field Club.
Also, Frank noted that when construction for those types of sponsored facilities add to the actual cost of construction, the sponsors pick up the cost.
“So the total stadium budget increased, but not the amount CSU bonded or is responsible for paying back,” Frank said. “The CSU share is constant and external founders are carrying the additional scope.”
The report also states that the target date for substantial completion on stadium construction is still June 9, followed by a final acceptance date of August 10. The venue will replace Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium, which was the Rams home from 1968-2016.
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