Northwestern University Readies for Launch of $220-M Sports Complex
More than two years after announcing plans to construct the $220-million Ryan Fieldhouse, an athletic and recreational complex sited on Lake Michigan, Evanston, Ill.-based Northwestern University plans to file a permit request with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in anticipation of proceeding with the project.
Northwestern indicated it also plans to work with Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services to ensure plans for the lakeside complex conform to local, state and federal environmental regulations.
When completed, the multi-use complex will consolidate student athletics spaces under a single roof, including practice facilities for the Wildcats, Northwestern's football team, and lacrosse, in addition to facilities for other sporting and non-sporting activities, including dance marathons, convocations and intramural sports. Plans also call for incorporating locker rooms, lounges, team meeting rooms and academic services into the complex, as well as upgrades to adjacent outdoor venues, including the Martin Soccer and Lacrosse Stadium.
“We are thrilled to take the first steps on a truly transformational project for our Wildcats student athletes and the entire Northwestern University community,” Northwestern Vice President for Athletics and Recreation Jim Phillips indicated in a statement. “This institution cultivates and expects excellence and this complex will be second to none in allowing us to continue to provide a world-class experience.”
Northwestern didn't indicate an anticipated time frame for securing permits from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or breaking ground on the project. Based on fund-raising activity, original plans called for an early 2015 groundbreaking and a two-year construction schedule.