Hello Cougar Fans and welcome to the A.D. Forum. Washington State University Director of Athletics Jim Sterk will post periodic entries on this page about topics regarding WSU Athletics.
Dec. 11, 2008
I hope this message finds you enjoying the holiday season. The purpose of this message is to update you on the latest stadium renovation news as well as set a direction for our work after the first of the year.
As you are aware, our goal at Washington State University is to make the complete renovation of Martin Stadium. Cougar alumni, students, and fans have played a huge role in helping that start to become a reality. As you know we have a lot of work to do; however, much has been accomplished already in achieving this vision.
In December 2006, construction of Phases I and II began, and work on the initial phases culminated with the unveiling of the "Cougar Pride" monument prior to the Apple Cup last month. If you attended a game at Martin Stadium this season, you had the opportunity to enjoy the vast benefits that the initial phases offered.
Phase III is targeted to be funded through revenue bonds from premium seating sales and private donations. We have received the support from many generous and dedicated Cougars. Phase III design will be completed by the end of this month. We had hoped to begin construction of Phase III in early 2009; however, the current state of the economy has had wide-ranging effects on all aspects of our lives, and the stadium renovation is no different.
In late October, the University put out a Request for Quote (RFQ) to regional and national financial institutions. At this time the financial institutions are unable to give us assurances they could finance the project due to the state of the credit/financial markets and the financial package WSU had put forth. As a result we will not be able to move forward in January with Phase III.
In preparation for the eventual market turnaround and to try to take advantage of favorable construction rates, our strategy is to move forward with the public phase of premium seating sales after the first of the year while at the same time continuing to solicit contributions toward the project.
I also want to address the University of Washington's efforts to secure state funding for its stadium project. I share President Elson S. Floyd's view that this is a matter between the University of Washington and the state. We are not involved in any legislative discussions and, to date, the legislature has not funded stadium renovations; therefore, we are pushing forward with our current plans. If this changes, we will certainly welcome legislature support for our project.
While we will not begin construction of Phase III as originally intended, we are still moving ahead. This project is critical to the future of Washington State University and WSU Athletics. Phases I and II provided the basic amenities for a Division I football stadium. Phase III and IV will allow WSU to keep pace competitively with our Pac-10 Conference members and the rest of the Football Bowl Subdivision. Ultimately, this project ensures WSU's long-term viability in the Pac-10.
If you would like more specific information on how to support the stadium renovation effort, please contact any of the individuals listed HERE or via e-mail at email@example.com. For information on the stadium renovation, including a general description of the premium seating options available, please go to our stadium renovation website martinstadium.org .
Thank you to all of you who have helped make what has been accomplished at Martin Stadium a reality and what it will be in the future.
All the best this holiday season,