The University of Kansas is embarking on sweeping renovations for Memorial Stadium and the Anderson Family Football Complex, marking the first phase of a new multi-use district near the campus. The university aims to raise $300 million through private funding for the football enhancements and upgrades to Allen Fieldhouse, the historic home of the Jayhawks’ basketball teams. Approximately $165 million in gifts and commitments have already been secured, along with $35 million in ARPA funds and a potential $50 million from the Kansas Department of Commerce’s University Challenge Grant program.
Kansas Chancellor Douglas Girod, alongside Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, athletic director Travis Goff, and football coach Lance Leipold, announced the plans at a news conference. The project, known as the Gateway District, is set to transform the campus and stimulate economic development in the region.
The initial phase encompasses further renovations to the Anderson Family Football Complex, as well as the construction of new facilities on the southwest, west, and north sides of the football stadium, including a conference center. The project will commence after the upcoming football season and is expected to conclude by the start of the 2025 season.
The university has been striving to upgrade its football stadium for over a decade, and the current endeavor gained momentum with the leadership of Travis Goff and the hiring of football coach Lance Leipold. The renovations will also involve bringing seating in the bowl area around 100 feet closer to the field, with approximately 70% of the stadium set to be replaced.
Moreover, future phases of the project will revamp the south and east sections of the stadium while developing multi-use spaces that encompass retail, entertainment, office spaces, and lodging, aimed at generating year-round revenue.
Kansas Chancellor Girod expressed excitement about the transformative impact of the project, emphasizing that the right timing and leadership were essential in bringing the project to fruition. The renovations are poised to have a significant positive effect not only on the football program but on the university and the community at large.
Photo credit – University of Kansas Athletics / KUAthletics.com / Lawrence, KS