USA: University of Florida set to revamp The Swamp

source:; author: Mateusz Osmola

USA: University of Florida set to revamp The Swamp Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, where University of Florida college football team play on a daily basis is set to be redeveloped. The venue, commonly known as The Swamp, was built way back in 1930. Now The University Athletics Department has submitted detailed plans for a major upgrade of the facility, which will be the largest in its history.


The Swamp History

Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, is being called 'The Swamp' by fans. It is not, of course, about the bad condition, but about the team using it - the Gators (common name for the alligators). These reptiles inhabit the swamps of Florida and are dangerous in their natural environment. So is the UF footballers home venue to the visiting team. Historically the stadium has also had a lot to do with real marshes. When it was built in 1930, the 32 lower rows were below ground level and, during the works, the high water level was a huge problem. Despite the construction site being flooded, it was possible to prepare three stands (excluding the south stand) for more than 21,000 spectators in just six months.

In 1950 and 1965, 10,000-11,000 seats were added on the west and east sides respectively, extending the single level stands upwards. The south side had mainly temporary stands at this time, which changed with the completion of a huge two-tier stand in 1982. With a new upper deck added at the north end (1991), the stadium was able to exceed 80,000. Florida competes in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the NCAA and the Eastern Division of the Southeastern Conference (SEC). During the games the arena can accommodate almost 90,000 fans. If you're interested in bookmakers and sports betting sites, might be the right place for you and your friends. Here you will find a ranking of bookmakers, the best promotional codes, bookmaker bonuses as well as news and tips prepared by our experts.

Ben Hill Griffin Stadium (The Swamp)© R24KBerg Photos

One of the biggest expenditures by the University of Florida came in 2003. That's when the street to the west of the stadium was moved to make room for a new main building with extensive corporate facilities. The press box above the main stand to the west was expanded to create suites and business space throughout the stadium. But now even bigger enterprise is on the way. 

Upcoming Swamp upgrade the biggest in history

The University Athletic Association is preparing to select an architect to begin the design phase of the revamped venue. It will be the largest facility project in the athletics department's history, with an estimated cost of around $400 million. The architectural team will provide details and the wider project is expected to address 'every phase' of the fan experience. The university plans to upgrade the arena, entrance gates, seating areas, food and beverage outlets and toilets, as well as improving the stadium's video board and sound system.

The search for the next architect will begin with a formal selection process coordinated by the UF Campus Planning, Design and Construction Office and will start this month. The architectural team will also develop a planning and phasing strategy for the project. Athletics director Scott Stricklin said: We’ve conducted a number of studies over the last five-plus years about what the future could look like for Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. We’ve engaged with vendors that specialise in iconic venues and stadium experience for both fans and players while offering a variety of solutions. It is now time to take that information and engage with an architect who can present renovation, construction and phasing options for The Swamp.

Ben Hill Griffin Stadium (The Swamp)© Pablo Corredor (cc: by-sa)