University of Vermont Athletics Master Plan

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Clients Location

Burlington, VT

Category

A Plan for a State of the Art Sports Complex

This study focuses upon the University of Vermont athletic facilities at two unconnected locations; the Athletic Campus (Post Field Complex and Patrick-Forbush-Gutterson) on the southern edge of the University campus, which includes exterior playing fields and the primary indoor facilities; and Centennial Field on the extreme northern edge of campus, a collection of playing fields and disparate buildings for storage and team use.

Proposed improvements to the Athletic Campus are focused on both the exterior and interior of the facility.  Visitors shall enter the new exterior Post Field Complex via a newly designed Ticket and Concessions Center, and then filter through a softly landscaped gateway into the complex proper.  Inside is a heavily landscaped public space formed by bleachers facing the new stadium and bleachers for viewing the secondary playing field.  The Events Plaza is envisioned as the busy central hub of a true athletic complex, an intersection of paying visitors, game day athletes seeking out the lockers under the bleachers, athletes in training, and lounging students; all filtering through trees, plantings, seating, and eating areas.  The public walkway terminates in a larger tree filled space framing a view to the new running track and the mountains beyond.  Cafe style seating, landscaped seating elements, and a covered structure will provide meeting areas for both large and small social gatherings.  The new Stadium Field, the primary playing arena, is sunken below grade, significantly reducing sound and noise impacts upon surrounding dorms and residential areas.  This artificial grass playing field will be framed by: the new Fitness Center at the northern end, establishing the Fitness Center as premier game seating, a bank of architecturally designed covered seating for 4,000 to the east, an elegant grassy berm lined with trees for picnic style sitting, and a formal garden wall displaying the Catamount spirit.  Lighting poles and protective netting, in addition to the trees and bleacher roof, will embrace the playing field from above, creating the sense of an athletic amphitheater.  Complementing the Stadium is the more informal Game Field, which is also laid with artificial turf, enabling access to outdoor playing fields earlier in the spring.  Smaller scale bleachers, more gently carved into the landscape, extend out from the pedestrian walk.  The north end of the field is anchored by the Ticket Center.  This building will be responsible for ticket sales, field storage, concessions, and act as a viewing platform for instruction and game analysis.  The eastern and southern boundaries will blend the recreational fields with the mountain ridges beyond.

Other supporting improvements to the Post Field Complex include 6-8 tennis courts adjacent to the western boundary of the stadium field, a collegiate level running track, recreational fields for soccer and football, and landscaped walkways.  All improvements will sensitively address spatial and physical connections to existing parking areas, residential areas, the existing athletic facility, and the surrounding campus.  Particular emphasis will be given not only to coordinating with the Campus Master Plan but also to reestablishing a strong physical framework to the UVM Campus as a whole.