Tropical Park Stadium

Capacity65 000
Country United States of America
ClubsMiami Hurricanes
CategoryDesign awaiting implementation
Design HKS Architects


Tropical Park Stadium – design description

How were the plans for a new stadium for the Miami Hurricanes developed?

In December 2021, billionaire John Ruiz, a financial contributor to University of Miami athletes, announced the formation of an initiative to build a new stadium for the Miami Hurricanes, the college football team representing the University of Miami. The Miami Hurricanes football team in 2008 moved out of the Orange Bowl stadium that had been in use for decades (which was subsequently replaced by a baseball stadium for the MLB league team, the Miami Marlins) and relocated to Hard Rock Stadium.

Hard Rock Stadium, at comparable capacity, is much more modern and offers better facilities for the Hurricanes than the old Orange Bowl, and since 2016 has additionally been equipped with a huge roof. Its drawback, however, is its considerable distance from the University of Miami's main campus, located in Coral Gables (approximately 21 mi / 34 km, while the Orange Bowl, located close to Miami's city center, was approximately 7 mi / 11 km from campus), as well as the need to share it with the NFL league team, the Miami Dolphins.

Initially, a site owned by Coral Gables Senior High School was chosen as the location for the new stadium. However, this solution was met with much criticism and was abandoned. Tropical Park, approximately 4 mi / 6.5 km from the college campus, was then chosen as the new location. John Ruiz partnered with HKS Architects, whose portfolio includes the design of SoFi Stadium and AT&T Stadium.

In July 2022, Johnny Ruiz (John Ruiz's son) published on his Twitter account plans for the revitalisation of Tropical Park, according to which the new stadium would stand in its central location, while in August 2022 the first renderings of the new stadium from HKS Architects were published on the same account.

What would the new stadium for the Miami Hurricanes be like?

The new stadium would be oval in shape, and would feature an open space behind one end of the pitch, on the south-east side, where it would be adjacent to the lake. On the other sides, the pitch would be surrounded by multi-tier stands with a capacity of 65,000 spectators. It is said that the facility would be fitted with a retractable roof, allowing it to be fully enclosed. The stadium would be air-conditioned and there are to be VIP boxes in the stands.

Will a new stadium for the Miami Hurricanes actually be built?

More details of the project are expected to be revealed in the near future and new renderings are expected to be released. According to assurances from the Ruiz family, the facility would be privately funded, although the exact funding model is not yet known. Certainly, part of the cost would be taken on by John Ruiz himself, and there have even been reports that the facility could be named LifeWallet Stadium, thus promoting one of Ruiz's business ventures.

It is, of course, impossible for Ruiz to bear the cost of a huge investment alone. As well as finding partners with capital, the implementation of the project will also depend on close cooperation with the university and the local authorities, and just getting permission to build a large stadium on one of the few green spaces in the area seems difficult to achieve.

The preliminary stated opening date for the new stadium is 2025, although this is only a loose estimate at this stage. Should the project come to fruition, the new facility would become the most modern stadium in the country dedicated to a college football team, setting new standards in the already highly developed and popular college football in the United States.



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