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What UK wants in a renovated Commonwealth Stadium

With the funding now in place, UK is asking for bids for the Commonwealth Stadium renovations. The university posted consultant submittal guidelines on their website, with this list of features they want included in each bid:


Project Description:

The goal for the project is the improvement the Commonwealth Stadium’s functionality and aesthetic appearance, as well as the quality of fan amenities, team facilities, press / stadium operation areas, premium seating areas, accessible seating areas, and general seating areas. Further, the project will accommodate the expansion and renovation of the Nutter Training Center

Budget: $110 Million (app. $87,000,000 maximum construction budget)

– New home team facilities to include a new football locker room, coaches’ lockers, equipment room, taping room, and media/interview room. Vacated spaces will be re‐purposed for other uses.

– New east sideline field access for the football team.

– New Recruiting / Multi‐purpose Room with views to the playing field along east end zone.

– Relocate student seating section to east end zone and provide a unique “student seating” environment.

– Replacement of existing south sideline bench seating to accommodate approximately 2,200 new club seats with a dedicated club lounge areas.

– Provide 16 new suites (14 seats each), a President’s Suite (100 seats), and an Athletic Director’s Suite (30 seats).

– Provide a new full service Kitchen to serve the stadium.

– Relocate and reconfigure the existing Press Box.

– Provide a new Team Store with high visibility and access from the outside/inside of the stadium.

– Increase accessible seating areas along the upper concourse.

– Replace existing Concession / Restrooms areas at the north and south of the stadium.

– Renovate and expand the existing Wildcat Den.

– Increase the size of the Staff Locker Room along the south sideline.

– Renovate and increase the size of the Visitor Locker Room and Visiting Coaches Locker facilities.

– Relocate the Officials Locker Room along the south sideline.

– Upgrades to the stadium signage and graphics.

– Provide new exterior precast façade to enhance the aesthetics of the stadium and hide exposed structural steel columns and corner ramps.

– Upgrade original stadium light poles.

– Provide video security cameras on the concourses and perimeter of the stadium.


– Expand and renovate the existing weight room, including the creation of a new mezzanine area to accommodate cardio equipment.

– Expand and renovate the existing athletic training/sports medicine area.

– New student‐athlete dining area with full‐service kitchen.

– New football team lounge area.

– Provide a new central receiving/storage pre‐engineered building


02/26/2013: Advertise for Consultants
03/04/2013: Consultant Pre-Proposal Meeting
03/08/2013: Consultant Submittal Due
03/12/2013: Consultant Shortlist Meeting
03/13/2013: Shortlisted Consultants Notified
04/01/2013: Consultant Interviews
04/02/2013: Consultant Notified – Fee Negotiation Begins
04/12/2013: Consultant Contract Sent to Frankfort
04/15/2013: Design Begins
09/13/2013: Initial Bid Packages Release
12/01/2013: Construction Begins
2013-2014: Additional Bid Packages as Required
08/14/2015: Substantial Completion

The deadlines for submittals is Friday, March 8th.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

35 Comments for What UK wants in a renovated Commonwealth Stadium

  1. Go Cats
    11:22 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    That seems like a lot to do on $110 Million

  2. Billy G
    11:23 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    PS. I’m willing to do the consulting work at 1/4th the lowest bid.

  3. Jonah Hex
    11:30 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Im glad they are addressing the outside of CWS too.

  4. gomez
    11:32 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    can’t wait for our ticket prices to quadruple

  5. Todd
    11:34 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    So, just as in Rupp Arena several years ago the students get shafted by losing better sideline tickets in exchange for lessor end zone tickets.

  6. DB11
    11:41 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    New lights aw yeah

  7. Fuddy Duddy
    11:42 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I like the recruiting room the way it was. Simple and efficient, the way we want our football players to be. Eat your sloppy joe’s and go make plays.

  8. Worried Section 133 Season Tix Holder
    11:47 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I have two seats in Section 133, Row 16. Anyone know if the following statement in the planned renovation scope of work will impact my seats?

    “Replacement of existing south sideline bench seating to accommodate approximately 2,200 new club seats with a dedicated club lounge areas”.

  9. TN Cat
    11:51 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    At least the Capilouto and Barnhart are getting new suites.

  10. NS
    11:59 am February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Joel Pett at it again! From today’s HL.

  11. YD
    12:12 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Why not make the UK in the middle of the field bigger?

  12. fred
    12:17 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I’m with #5… students to the end zone?!? WTF?

  13. chad
    12:21 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Wow…the negativity is ridiculous. Be excited about it people. Sure you can pick this apart for things you don’t like, but there’s some exciting stuff in there.

  14. Me
    12:25 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    #3 I agree, a pre-cast facade for the exterior is very much needed

  15. james
    12:25 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    13. are you not a little upset that barnhart and eli are giving themselves big new suites? and they each need their own? they can sit with the other paupers in a generic luxury box as far as i’m concerned. or they should build them with athletic department money.

  16. Me
    12:27 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I also think they should paint the end zones a little better.

  17. Jason
    12:28 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Um those Presidential suites are there for a reason. They host the big time donors and other weight-throwers in there. They are important and EVERY stadium has them.

  18. Bleedblue36
    12:38 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Where do you people come from? 13. Do you really think that “Barnhart and Eli” are “giving themselves big new suites”? Do you realize that a large part of the President’s job is to recruit donors? Donors enjoy the best experience possible. And if that means that the University caters to them, so be it. Money makes the wheels turn…or were you happy with Joker? If it were up to people like you, the rennovations wouldn’t even be taking place. The large majority of you people need to educate yourself on how the BUSINESS of college sports actually work before you come in here and complain. You guys first complain that our stadium is old and outdated, and then when the rennovations come, you complain about what they are doing. Let me guess, you are probably the same people who think that chair back seats and cupholders for your diet cokes are better right?

    Go to other stadiums in the SEC and actually look around. You will see that Commonwealth is doing the SAME things that these stadiums arleady have in place.

  19. Bleedblue36
    12:43 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Not 13….15. Sorry.

  20. Disgruntled student
    12:44 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Kentucky wants to promote a better fan atmosphere, yet constantly shafts it’s loudest and most loyal fans, the students. I’m paying over 9000 dollars in out of state tuition each semester, hell, they even take a chunk out of me for “athletic fees.” The least they could do is give me some decent seats. But no. Just like in Rupp, they’ll cram us in the places that people wont pay more than 5 dollars for.

  21. the Big Dog
    12:49 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    In true Mitch fashion, not a single one of those “improvements” will mean anything to the average fan except for higher ticket prices.

  22. bleedblue36
    12:53 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    20. Im sorry, but the student section was AWFUL the last two seasons. Granted, the product on the field was weak. But of all people…you have the least amount of excuses to not show up for football games. And how do you know you are getting “shafted”?

    How can you people be mad at Mitch? Really? I don’t get it.

  23. bleed platelets
    12:55 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    bleedblue36- I have to take exception to your tone. When you say people “need to educate yourself on how the business of college sports”, I think you are being a little too soft-shoed. I think it would be more accurate to say “you need to educate yourself on COMMON SENSE”. Some of the comments on these boards almost make me ashamed to be a UK Grad. They are as close to completely idiotic that you almost have to believe they are trolls just trying to get a response. I mean, do these other people have brains? Do they truly believe that a President’s Suite (or Athletic Director’s Suite, for that matter) is going to be over-run with Eli and Mitch’s cousins and nieces and nephews, like a family picnic in the backyard. If they think that, I feel sorry for them. No doubt those boxes are going to be filled each Saturday with influential business owners and the Crazy-wealthy people that write a check with 6 figures on it without blinking. Suites like that get used for corporate sponsors that buy expensive advertising packages. Suites like that get used as a “demo” for selling the benefits on leasing a suite that costs inflated sums of money. (but people buy to inflate their ego).

  24. Dr. Tom
    1:01 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    As one who has had some experience with commercial building construction, I agree with #1…that’s not near enough money to do eveything on the list. Sorry it is just not enough!!

  25. chad
    1:02 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    #15….No, not even a little bit.

  26. tbradg
    1:06 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    re: Student Experience…last time I saw a shot of the ERupption Zone the students seemed to be enjoying themselves. It will be fine.

    Hell…when I was a student I went to every game and remember exactly 5 minutes from all of them…could have cared less if I was in the end zone.

  27. Hee Haw
    1:44 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Are they putting in more exits so people can leave earlier in a quicker fashion?

  28. BSCDC
    1:50 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Sounds like UK is trying to copy what Alabama has done to their Stadium in 2009. It was a huge upgrade and it is one of the best in the SEC. Their student section is located at the end of the endzone which gives Alabama a huge boost in the home field advantage. If we are trying to be a power house in football best to look at stadiums like Alabama, LSU and UGA to help create a tradition.

  29. B-Lord
    1:54 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I’m excited about the upgrades to CW! I hope they can get this all done for the $$’s. If you think that a fancy stadium/practice facility/etc doesn’t impress recruits then go back to listening to games on your radios and get off the internet. High School/College kids like nice things. Notice how so many of them are using $300 headphones to listen to music on their $400 iPhones. Time for UK football to get with the times.

  30. iamjackscompletelackofsurprise
    2:45 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    in other words, Papa John Stadium East.

  31. construction
    3:40 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    28 – Agreed, Students in the endzone will make a huge difference as most schools in the country do this.

  32. Common Sense
    4:26 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Don’t move the Student Section to the endzone! Those are the worst seats in the stadium! Dang it.

  33. Jaybird
    5:45 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    Students crying about where their seats are gonna be sickens me! How would 90% of you even remember where the student section is its been so long since you’ve actually gone and filled it up? The students have been a HUGE disappointment last few yrs and when you do show up its end of first quarter. You said it yourself, it only cost you $5 & you still don’t bother a lot of the time. Just get your tickets, have a few cold ones, & get ur a$$ in their early wherever they put you and make as much noise as possible! You can always pay $350/seat like I do if you want a better seat, and that’s the cheapest in the stadium.

  34. Tired of Being 1 of 12 Games
    7:41 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    The spring football game tickets that you can get at ticketmaster for $1.50, keeps you from having to stand in the ticket line on game day? But they will still be giving them out on game day?

  35. UKErin
    9:06 pm February 27, 2013 Permalink

    I’m a decade long east endzone ticket holder. I selfishly don’t want the students to move there because I love my seats and my football family.