Northwestern University has released renderings for a new football stadium to replace the current 97-year-old structure.
The new Ryan Field will be funded entirely with private dollars. The proposed design includes a more intimate setting with a capacity of 35,000, 12,000 fewer than the current Ryan Field, with a state-of-the-art canopy designed to focus noise and light on the field.
The new Ryan Field is being developed as a stadium campus with plazas and community park, as well as other publicly accessible green spaces for residents to enjoy year-round activities. The project is also designed to achieve Gold LEED certification from a sustainability standpoint.
The new stadium will have chair backs for every seat as well as a student section, technology and scoreboard amenities and upgraded concessions featuring food from local restaurants.
“We are extremely excited to move forward with a transformational stadium project and grateful to our university leadership and to the Board of Trustees for their decision to take the next steps toward a new Ryan Field,” said Dr. Derrick Gragg, Combe Family vice president for athletics and recreation. “We are all grateful to the Ryan Family for their unwavering commitment to Northwestern University and our academic and athletics programs. I have no doubt that the privately funded stadium will be a game-changer for our football program, athletics department and the community, and will be in line with our other excellent facilities including Welsh-Ryan Arena and Ryan Fieldhouse.”
The Ryan family’s gift was the largest in Northwestern history and included funding not only for the new stadium, but the largest academic gifts in school history to accelerate breakthroughs in biomedical, economics and business research.
“Our family’s commitment to athletics is much deeper than football,” said Pat Ryan. “The new Ryan Field will be more than just an amazing home for Wildcat football. Our hope is that through this new stadium campus, Ryan Field is re-imagined as an architecturally significant year-round gathering place for the Northwestern and Evanston communities that is accessible to all.”