Nebraska to increase Memorial Stadium expansion
An increased expansion of Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium will help
satisfy a higher demand for seats and allow for future growth as
the school enters the Big Ten conference, athletic department
officials said Friday.
A proposal approved by university regents adds 1,000 seats to
the expansion first announced in October and will bring the
87-year-old stadium’s capacity to about 91,000 fans, said John
Ingram, assistant athletic director for capital planning. The
original plan called for the addition of 5,000 seats to the east
side of the stadium.
Ingram said the change was settled on during the design phase
and provides for an additional floor on the east side that will
have five suites and leave room for future development.
“That prepares us for the future and gives us more flexibility
for making changes down the road as far as adding seats. It doesn’t
limit as much what we can do,” he said.
The change will add about $8 million to the cost of the
expansion project, increasing it to $63.5 million.
Athletic director Tom Osborne said in October that a modest
expansion would bring the stadium closer in size to its Big Ten
counterparts but also preserve Nebraska’s sellout streak, which is
the longest in college football and dates to 1962. He was out of
the office Friday and unavailable to comment.
Nebraska enters the Big Ten on July 1. The largest stadium in
the conference – and in college football – is Michigan Stadium, the
venerable Big House, which seats 109,901.
The athletic department said in its proposal that the higher
demand for seats as Nebraska switches from the Big 12 to the Big
Ten conference necessitated a bigger expansion.
Construction is slated to begin in May. The project would be
done before the 2013 football season.
The last stadium expansion was in 2006.
Nebraska athletics: www.huskers.com