Athletics

Penn State Athletics selects Populous to develop facilities master plan

Populous and Penn State to produce comprehensive plan to address current and long-term athletic facilities needs

Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics is developing a comprehensive facilities master plan that will serve as a roadmap over the short and long term. Credit: Annemarie Mountz / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics (ICA) will partner with Populous, one of the world’s leading architecture and sport event planning firms, to collaborate on programming, developing and producing a comprehensive facilities master plan to address current and long-term needs for the Nittany Lions.

Penn State has one of the nation’s most comprehensive and successful athletic programs, with 31 varsity sports (16 men’s/15 women’s), approximately 800 student-athletes and 300 employees. Penn State Athletics also is in the midst of a wide-ranging strategic planning project to help determine strategies and priorities for the period of 2016-20 and beyond. The strategic plan and facilities master plan will serve as a roadmap for ICA over the short and long term.

Populous has more than 32 years of experience designing innovative, forward-looking facilities that create a memorable and authentic fan experience while enhancing revenue generation opportunities. Populous has designed more than 2,000 projects globally, including the 2001 Beaver Stadium renovation and expansion, and planned more than 200 major worldwide events, including Olympic Games, World Cups, Super Bowls and NCAA Final Fours.

“This facilities master plan will be critical in conjunction with our strategic plan as we develop our road map for the short and long term future,” said Penn State Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour. “This study will encompass all our venues and spaces and be vital in helping us determine our options in creating the best conditions for success for our student-athletes, enhance the fan experience and add value for our passionate alumni and fans while maximizing the potential of all our facilities.”

“To have the opportunity to work with Penn State – home to such a vast array of talented athletic programs – is an honor,” stated Scott Radecic, senior principal at Populous and a Penn State former student-athlete and graduate. “We’re looking forward to helping shape the future of Penn State Athletics through careful planning, an understanding of existing and emerging trends impacting the fan experience and conversations with student-athletes, administrators and coaches. This is a tremendous opportunity for the university, and one that signifies a commitment to making the University’s programs second to none.”  

The master plan will address the venues that Penn State’s 31 programs practice, compete and are housed in and the needs of its student-athletes, administration, coaches and staff. The goal is to provide ICA with a comprehensive vision for the future with a phased implementation strategy that responds to current needs, is economically viable and flexible to adjust to the dynamic and fluctuating environment of intercollegiate athletics.

The scope of work will include a 10-year horizon as well as goals for 20 years and beyond. The master plan will include a phased and prioritized implementation strategy and corresponding conceptual level total project cost estimates. The project also will include a site plan that establishes site relationships, pedestrian and vehicular circulation, open space and landscape concept and identify branding and business opportunities.

The ICA master plan also will be informed by and integrated into the University Park campus master plan.

Populous will engage a variety of constituencies to assist in the master plan process. The project is expected to be complete by July 2016.

Penn State has nearly 20 facilities that are used for team competitions and practice and that house team locker, academic, meeting and performance enhancement rooms, in addition to ICA staff offices and meeting rooms.

Penn State student-athletes have an NCAA graduation success rate of 89 percent and have earned 189 Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America selections, the third-highest total among Division I programs. The Nittany Lions have won 74 team national championships and 92 Big Ten Conference crowns and their 27 NCAA championships since 1992-93 are the most of any Big Ten Conference institution.

 

Last Updated October 09, 2015

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