It was a star-studded affair to say the least, with NCAA President Dr. Myles Brand, RPI President Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, and Board of Trustees President Samuel Heffner Jr. all attending the ceremony.
The East Campus Athletic Village will further transform the Rensselaer campus by developing state-of-the-art facilities across the spectrum of athletics. The centerpiece of the of the Athletic Village will be a multi-purpose stadium that will eventually seat 7,500 spectators for a variety of events. The promise of the new stadium goes beyond just events for Rensselaer, as it will allow community events, a variety of championships, competitions and commencements to be held in an exquisite and remarkable venue.
A new basketball arena will also be built to hold 1,200 spectators, as well as an administrative center, team rooms, and a number of unique amenities. As is described by the University, the flexibility of the East Campus Athletic Village will increase Rensselaer's visibility throughout New York State and nationally. It will truly bring its athletics programs to a new level, and in doing so, elevate the City of Troy to a new level.
Phase 2 of the project includes a new natatoriumn (swimming facilities), indoor track, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, and an additional artificial turf field.
We fully understand that this project does hold some questionable aspects, including the impact the athletic village will have on the nearby neighborhoods. We are working closely with RPI to be sure that measures are put into place to mitigate these factors.
Below are some pictures from the ground breaking, the first of which is quite clearly the 50-yard line. The ground breaking took place on the 50-yard line of the new field to be built. The school lined the grass for the event. It was very clever.
Some students looking on during the speeches.
An overhead shot of the model for the project.
The official turning of the earth, involving those mentioned above.
Below is a very interesting look at what the area behind the Houston Field House looked like back in 1952. You can see all of the buildings, which served as rooming for the students. It looks rather cold.
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