Venue News: Washington State To Fund Premium Seating Project with TV Revenue; Missouri Considers Stadium Expansion

The Washington State University Board of Regents gave final approval for an $80 million project to add premium seats and a new press box on the south side of Martin Stadium. The athletics department plans to have the press box completed before the first home game of next season; the luxury seating should be completed soon after. According to the university, the project will be paid for with funds from ticket sales, increased television revenues, and donations, with annual debt service for the stadium project estimated at $5.4 million. A major financing component is increased revenue from the recently completed Pac-12 television contract, which goes into effect beginning with the 2012-13 academic year. Washington State’s share from that contract will range from $10.4 million in 2012-13 to $22.4 million in 2024-25…

…Missouri is considering a modest stadium expansion as it prepares to leave the Big 12 Conference for the SEC. A facilities master plan calls for the addition of an unspecified number of premium outdoor club seats on the stadium’s east side. The vertical addition would mirror the press box and luxury suites on the stadium’s west side. Memorial Stadium’s current seating capacity of 71,004 will rank 10th among the Southeastern Conference’s 14 schools. According to Missouri’s associate athletic director, the addition could cost between $30 million and $40 million and will likely be built using department reserves or money raised from private donors. Missouri currently offers two types of indoor premium seats – 20-person private suites and the communal club seats of the Tiger Lounge…

…The New York Red Bulls are more than doubling the cost of suites at Red Bull Arena, making them the most expensive premium seats in Major League Soccer. Prices for the all-inclusive luxury suites will jump from between $65,000 and $75,000 to between $150,000 and $175,000 for the 2012 season. The team also will debut a premium field-side seating area in a section previously used for media. Luxury suites at MetLife Stadium for the New York Jets range from $165,000 to $340,000, with the latter price point including food and beverage. Madison Square Garden’s 20 bunker suites carry a $1 million annual fee, and its 58 Madison-level suites are priced in the six figures. Citi Field’s Empire-level suites range from $225,000 to $275,000 a year. Of the 17 other MLS teams, only the Los Angeles Galaxy boasts a six-figure fee for its suites…

…Warsaw’s brand-new National Stadium, one of the venues for next year’s UEFA EURO 2012 European Football Championship, will implement the Cisco Connected Stadium solution. The state-of-the-art customized Internet Protocol (IP) network for sports and entertainment venues will allow organizers, players, and fans to benefit from the latest information and communication technology solutions. With the Cisco network in place, the Polish capital’s 58,000-seat National Stadium, a multifunctional venue for large-scale sports and entertainment events, will have a single converged platform that integrates building management, access, communication, operations, and entertainment systems. The Connected Stadium system was custom-designed to provide wired and wireless access and data transmission from several systems, including ticketing and cashless payment, and is optimized for video transmission from hundreds of video surveillance cameras installed throughout the stadium.

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