The Temple University Board of Trustees is pursuing a plan to construct a 35,000-seat stadium on-campus, pending further discussion at a December meeting.
Patrick O’Connor, the chairman of the Temple Board of Trustees estimates that the stadium will cost $100 million.
The location will be pursued for the northwest corner of campus, at the current location of Geasey Field and the track. This comes as plans have been set in motion to build a new sports complex at the old William Penn High School, which Temple purchased in 2014. That location will be new home of the men’s and women’s soccer, field hockey, lacrosse and track and field teams.
The proposed location of the new stadium is a site that has been in flux for quite some time now. Last spring, Temple tore down the graduate apartments at Broad and Norris Streets across from Geasey field to make room for a pocket park for students and the community. The Pavilion next to Pearson-McGonigle hall was recently transformed into an indoor practice facility for the Division One sports teams, however, that site may be needed for the stadium as well as the connecting parking lot.
A recent City Council Bill proposes that Edberg-Olson, Temple football’s current facility at 10th and Diamond, be converted to an indoor hub.
This all comes as Temple football is off to its best start in program history. The Owls are 7-0 after taking down ECU on Thursday night. Notre Dame is next up to visit town and that game is sold out. This is the first time that Temple has sold out two games in a season since moving to Lincoln Financial Field since moving to the South Philadelphia sports complex back in 1976.
The other sold out crowd this season was the season opener against Penn State where more than 69,000 fans watched the Owls take down the Nittany Lions for the first time in 74 years. Temple’s contract with the Linc, however, is set to expire in 2017.
With two games this season drawing crowds of close to double what the proposed seating in a potential new stadium, how Temple will handle demand for such games is yet to be determined.
The size of the stadium, however, is comparable to what other schools in the American Athletic Conference currently have. The stadium at East Carolina where Temple played Thursday night seats 50,000 and Nippert stadium, where Temple played Cincinnati earlier this year was recently expanded to 40,000 seats. Houston has an on-campus stadium seating 40,000. Temple is not scheduled to play the Cougars in the regular season.
The only other colllege in Philadelphia with a football stadium is the University of Pennsylvania. Franklin Field seats 52,593.
O’Connor told Philly.com that Temple is looking at fundraising as a key for building the stadium and they have already gotten “some seven-figure commitments.” He continued to say that Temple does not “want to use tuition dollars for this.”
The next Board of Trustees meeting is scheduled for December 8th, where the plans are expected to be further discussed.
Highlighted is the proposed location for a new stadium at Temple University