WVU Athletic Projects Putting More than $125 Million in Economy - WBOY - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

WVU Athletic Projects Putting More than $125 Million in Economy

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WVU Baseball is less than a year from moving into its new facility at the University Town Center.

Tuesday, WVU Athletics held a press conference announcing plans to make $106 million in other upgrades.

WVU Athletic Director Oliver Luck told reporters, it's all about the fan experience, and the projects will start here at Milan Puskar Stadium and at the Coliseum.

"Fans expect more when they go to a ball game then they did at old Mountaineer Field," Luck said. "And I think they expect more than they did when new Mountaineer Field opened up in 1980, and that applies to the Coliseum."

Friday, WVU's Board of Governors approved $106 million in athletic upgrades, joining $20 million already being spent on a new baseball facility, bringing the athletic department's financial footprint on construction alone to $126 million.

"A lot of counties are struggling, but Monongalia County is booming, really along with counties in the eastern panhandle," said Luck. "It's an exciting time to be able to say that we're injecting $125 million in capital improvements the local community."

Tuesday the University announced that it will spend at least half on the stadium, adding 4 new LED Boards, wall graphics and an updated and expanded concourse.

"The stadium has held up well," Luck said, "But I think there needs to be upgrades, not for the players, this is really all for the fans, and fan enjoyment at Mountaineer Field."

An expanded concourse at the Coliseum headlines a list of nine other possible projects.

"Additional space here is going to be positive for our fans," he added. "Better concessions, better restrooms, we're 102 units short based on today's standards. That's a lot."

There are no specific timelines for projects, but construction on the stadium could begin after this season. 

The money comes from media rights, Mountaineer Athletic Club fundraising and a $75 million bond.

County Commissioner Tom Bloom calls the projects are a victory for the community.

"People think you just have 60,000 people just at the game. But you have the night before, all the hotels, a lot of the businesses restaurants. Everyone wins in this."

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