University of Louisville Athletic Director Tom Jurich announced a bold vision for expanding Papa John's Cardinal Stadium Tuesday morning. The plan calls for expanding the stadium to 63,600 seats with an upper deck and 75 luxury boxes. CardinalSports.com has more.
Jurich said Tuesday the University had mailed out priority seating reservation forms to all ticket-holding fans of the program to gauge interest in stadium expansion. Already, the University has more than 2,000 fans on waiting lists for season tickets for the current 42,000 seat configuration.
Under the new plan, the stadium would be expanded another 21,000 seats in an upper deck of seating, 45 new luxury suites and 2,000 more loge seats with a walkway connecting the two sides of the stadium around the closed end zone nicknamed the "Crunch Zone".
The University finalized a conceptual image last week, and released the image to media for the first time Tuesday morning.
"We want to get to a total of 63,600 seats and we'd like to add another 45 luxury boxes to get us up to 75 total," Jurich said Tuesday. "We're going to take the south end zone and make a large terrace out of it, a seating area, a walking area and a concessions area. A place for fans to mingle and enjoy food service and beverage service."
Jurich said Tuesday plans are well underway for future expansion. When asked if this was just a conceptual idea floated to fans or a concrete plan, Jurich said, "We've spent hundreds of thousands of dollars getting ready for this."
Louisville fans looking to get in on season tickets are asked to return the form mailed to fans Tuesday and check their seating preference for both a new football stadium and the new basketball stadium downtown.
Jurich said the best case scenario for stadium expansion would be for the 2008 season, but the timetable is most likely set for 2009 if the fan interest is as strong as University staff has gauged thus far.
Stay logged on to CardinalSports.com for more from Tom Jurich later today.