Winston-Salem State University is expected to remain at a renovated Bowman Gray Stadium through the end of its lease in 2037, effectively postponing any plans for a new stadium.
Earlier this year, it appeared that WSSU could eventually depart Bowman Gray Stadium in favor of a new on-campus facility. The university included a new football stadium in a 20-year master plan that was announced in June, with the specifications calling for a 6,000-seat venue.
However, it is now expected that WSSU will remain at Bowman Gray Stadium as the facility receives $9 million in improvements. The current plan calls for the City of Winston-Salem, which had been in discussions about selling the facility to WSSU, to retain ownership of Bowman Gray Stadium and complete the upgrades. WSSU’s lease runs through 2037, and officials have indicated that building a new football stadium before that agreement expires is not a priority. The improvements are pending city council approval. More from the Winston-Salem Journal
WSSU’s lease on the stadium runs out in 2037. WSSU officials said that with many other projects on the table, replacing Bowman Gray with a new stadium won’t be a priority before the conclusion of the lease.
Announcing the improvements on Wednesday were Winston-Salem Mayor Allen Joines and Elwood Robinson, the chancellor of WSSU.
Improvements planned include new restrooms, a high-capacity Wi-Fi system, and seating, parking and landscaping improvements.
The plan also envisions the creation of signs and other features that can be changed seasonally, promoting the stadium for Rams football in the fall and for Bowman Gray racing in the spring and summer.
Under the current plans, the renovations would be carried out in phases. The design would be completed in 2019, with work on the renovations beginning in 2020 and concluding in 2022.
Image courtesy WSSU Athletics.
RELATED STORIES: WSSU Master Plan Includes New Football Stadium