July 16, 2008
For those who have been on the WSU campus during the past year or have been following the progress of the stadium renovation on martinstadium.org, you have witnessed the beginning of the transformation to the home of Cougar football.
This beginning encompassed Phases I and II of the renovation, which will be completed by the start of the 2008 season. While one aspect of the renovation ends this fall, another one, Phase III, has been ongoing even before work on Phases I and II began in December 2006
During the past several years, we have been in the "silent phase" portion of fundraising for Phase III, which will add premium seating to the north side of the stadium. With the selection of a design-build team in June, we are now ready to go forward with the public phase of our fundraising efforts.
As a refresher, Phase III of the project is budgeted at a maximum of $42 million and will be funded through revenue bonds and donations with construction tentatively scheduled to begin in early 2009. It will add upper level premium seating to the north side of the stadium, including luxury suites, loge boxes, and club seats.
We will need help from you and every Cougar to generate the funding for Phase III. If you would like more specific information on how to support the stadium renovation effort, please click HERE to contact any of the Athletic Department staff members listed on the martinstadium.org website or you may contact us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The stadium renovation may be the most prominent facility project that the Athletic Department has undertaken, but our work on athletic facilities will not be limited to the stadium this summer.
One project will not be as visible to the public as the stadium renovation, unless you happen to be walking through the Bohler Athletic Complex, but it is significant to the development of what is already one of our most successful programs.
The rowing program achieved a fourth place national finish in 2006 and this season finished eighth nationally; however, it does not have the luxury of a boathouse or training facilities located adjacent to water in which they practice. While the Cougars compete at one of the most picturesque venues in the nation, the Snake River, it is a venue that is not immediately on-site of the WSU campus but rather 15 miles away.
In addition, during the winter months, it is not possible for the team to row at the Snake, placing the team, so to speak, in a "winter freeze." This places the program at a disadvantage with its warm-weather Pac-10 counterparts, thus necessitating the need for an indoor rowing facility located at the Bohler Athletic Complex Pool. Construction began in July with a completion date scheduled for late fall.
Work at Bohler Athletic Complex will not be limited to the indoor rowing facility. Prior to the 2004-05 season, a practice facility exclusively for the Cougar men's and women's basketball teams opened. Last summer, the men's basketball coaching offices adjacent to the facility were renovated, and this summer the remodeling of locker rooms for men's and women's basketball, as well as soccer, is taking place with a tentative completion date in late August.
Another addition to the department will be the installation of a HydroWorx system (underwater treadmill and resistance jets for joint-friendly training or conditioning) to assist all of our student-athletes with rehabilitation from injuries and overall training. Construction of this facility (pictured), which will be located just east of the Hollingbery Fieldhouse, began in June with a completion date slated for early fall.
Baseball has enjoyed renovations to its facilities in recent years with the installation of FieldTurf and the construction of an indoor batting cage. Further work is planned with a renovation of the press box at Bailey-Brayton Field in the near future.
Finally, I will conclude this column with how it began, with the stadium renovation. In addition to completing the initial phases of the renovation, the installation of a new scoreboard will occur this summer. The scoreboard, which will feature state-of-the-art video and audio technology, will be operational by the start of the 2008 football season.
World-class facilities serve a vital role in the success and well-being of the Athletic Department and our student-athletes, and all of these aforementioned projects are significant in continuing the development of world-class facilities in the department. Much of this development would not be possible without your backing, and, on behalf of the department, I would like to express my gratitude to you for this support. You are having a positive affect in providing our student-athletes with one of the best student-athlete experiences in the nation.