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Trustees approve design phase for new athletic facility

By Contributing Writer on October 8, 2013
athletics facility rendering

A preliminary rendering of Colgate’s new athletics facility.

Colgate’s proposed new athletic facility received final approval Saturday from the university’s Board of Trustees to begin the design phase.

The trustees announced that the facility, featuring the new home of Colgate ice hockey, along with locker room facilities for both soccer and lacrosse, will be constructed on the site of the current Van Doren Field. A new soccer facility will be built on the soccer practice grounds between Andy Kerr Stadium and Tyler’s Field.

“The Board of Trustees is thrilled to move forward with this project,” said Michael J. Herling ’79, P’08’10’12, chair of the board committee on athletic affairs. “Building the new athletic facility underscores Colgate’s commitment to excellence in athletics as a complement to our core academic mission.”

Raiders Director of Athletics Victoria M. Chun ’91 MA’94 also thanked the entire Colgate family for its support of the project.

“We are grateful to President Jeffrey Herbst, our Board of Trustees, Vice President for Institutional Advancement Murray Decock ’80, and the entire advancement team for seeing this dream through to reality,” Chun said. “To be able to cross the finish line in this manner provides a great sense of accomplishment to everyone involved.

“I don’t recall any other project where so many members of the Colgate family contributed to this becoming a reality. The whole process of working together once again shows the true spirit that is Colgate University.”

Starr Rink, the Raiders’ home ice since 1959, opened its doors before the university became coeducational and doubled the size of its student body. With the passing of the decades, the facility has stretched to meet the needs of several Division I programs, providing offices for soccer, basketball, and others.

Trustees voted unanimously in February to initiate the 97,000-square-foot new athletic facility project. The decision to move forward continues the momentum established with the construction and renovation of academic buildings, including the Case Library and Geyer Center for Information Technology, the Robert H.N. Ho Interdisciplinary Science Center, and Lathrop Hall.

Chun said an architect for the new facility would be selected right away, with construction to begin immediately after the design phase is complete.

“The work is just beginning,” Chun said. “The soccer field is already in the design phase and the plan is for our teams to be playing in their new stadium by the start of next season.”


  • Bob Austrian '85 said:

    What an exciting move, building a new rink and related locker facilities to upgrade from what we all know have become tired, if still beloved, facilities.

    As a hockey fan and, for 13 years now, a neighbor on College Street,we can’t wait for this new arena. Let’s close all of College Street for the first home game, and host a Colgate Hockey Block Party befetting this new dedication.

    Go Gate.

  • Steve Solomon '76, MAT '78 said:

    This is welcome news for the entire Colgate community. Finally our coaches will have new offices through the reallocation of space and they will be shifted away from make-do slots in the rafters of Sanford and utility-purpose spaces in Reid. And the efficiencies of a new rink will ensure that supporters of the teams get the amenities they seek while offering green credentials Starr’s 1959-era builders never contemplated.

    I look forward to seeing the designs for the first phase- the new soccer stadium that frees up Van Doren for the construction of the new facility for ice hockey, soccer and lacrosse. In time we will see the designs for the facility itself with all the excitement and challenges that present themselves.

    These next few months will be very interesting for those in who take pride in our beautiful campus and the diligence and professionalism of our Advancement, Facilities and Athletic Department staff.

    Go ‘gate!

  • Jason said:

    This sounds great. I hope that the facility is designed with the fan/viewer experience as a high priority. A facility that is comfortable and easy to get in and out of can reinforce the commitment of Colgate’s great fans by making the games into truly enjoyable experiences.