Cougar football fans are getting excited about the future of University of Houston Football. Ground was broken on a new stadium earlier this year.
“We’re thrilled about this new stadium: 40,000 seats,” said Mack Rhoades, University of Houston’s vice president for intercollegiate athletics.
Since February, the same contractor that built Houston’s Reliant Park, has had about 500 people working to build the University of Houston’s new state of the art football stadium. When it opens in August 2014, it will house 40,000 seats, with space to grow.
“We’re hoping that it is 40,000 seats for now, but it is 60,000 in the future. The way we designed the stadium is that it can be expandable in increments of 10,000. So, hopefully, we get from 40 to 50 and then 50 to 60. I have a feeling that we’re going to be able to do that. Our fans have been great. They understand that it’s one year of inconvenience, and we’re going to get to go in 2014 with this beautiful brand new state-of-the art stadium,” said Rhoades.
Located right where the aging Robertson Stadium stood, the new stadium will have a different east-west orientation.
“We reoriented the stadium and really wanted to take advantage of that downtown Houston skyline view. Now, coming out of every time out during a televised game, the cameras are going to be able to pan out to the downtown skyline. We think it’s going to be just a dynamic view for us,” said Rhoades.
In addition to allowing for a spectacular view of downtown Houston, the new orientation will also help prevent glare for fans sitting on the stadium’s north side.
“That side will not be hit by the sun as intensely as it was in the old orientation. We just think it makes for better seats for our overall fan base,” explained Rhoades.
The new stadium will feature a wide variety of seating options, everything from affordable student and family priced sections to some unique premium seating. The premium seats will be positioned lower and closer to the field than in most university football stadiums. At the new UH stadium, the premium club level will be just 25 feet above the playing surface, and its private suites will sit 35 feet above the playing field.
“You’re going to be right there on top of the action in the premium seats versus up high and back. We really made sure that there’s not a bad seat in the stadium,” said Rhoades.
But beyond new fan amenities – including a giant new video board, more efficient concessions and better food – Rhoades also said the new stadium will help to recruit student athletes.
“When we bring prospective recruits here to be able to show them that they’re going to be playing in a state of the art facility like this, the new stadium will certainly be an asset,” said Rhoades.
For More Information About the New UH Stadium:
Link to live camera/time lapse of New UH Stadium Construction: