Citadel board moves forward with Johnson Hagood
The Citadel Board of Visitors voted today to move forward with renovations to Johnson Hagood Stadium, setting aside a proposal to make Stoney Field the new home for Bulldog football. The action followed the recommendation of a study committee that had investigated building a new stadium at Stoney Field in partnership with the city, county and state.
decision came down to questions of time and money according to BOV Athletic
Committee Chairman Julian Frasier.
"We had to do due diligence because the Stoney Field proposal offered many possibilities in working with the city, county and state," Frasier said. "But the price tag and additional time required for permits and construction made Stoney Field unrealistic given our resources and responsibilities to our players and fans."
Developing Stoney Field would have cost an estimated $47 million and involved a lengthy permitting process from federal and state agencies because of the site's proximity to wetlands. By comparison, renovating the Johnson Hagood site will cost approximately $36 million and the west stands can be ready for the 2006 football season.
"We will continue to explore partnerships with the city, county and state for mutually beneficial uses of Stoney Field," said Billy Jenkinson, chairman of the board. "A great deal of good has come from our conversations. But right now we are going full speed ahead to get Johnson Hagood ready for football."
BOV member Buck Limehouse praised the decision. "Now we need all alumni and fans to keep the momentum going by giving us their support so that we can build not only the west stands but also the tower and façade."
The west stands will be finished by fall 2006 but the timetable for completing the remainder of the multi-phase project will depend on fundraising. The college has already raised more than $7 million for the stadium project.
Don Tomasik, vice president for facilities and engineering, said construction on the west stands would start at the end of May with the following timeline:
tower, facade and renovation of the east side stands will be completed
as soon as funds are raised.