The University of Minnesota and Gophers athletic director Norwood Teague has released conceptual designs for a proposed athletic village at the current site of the Bierman Complex. This village would be the anchor for the entire athletic district, the university says.
Projects included in the phase one of this massive undertaking is a new academic center, training table, football complex, women’s gymnastics facility, Olympic sport indoor practice facility, outdoor Olympic sport track, men’s/women’s basketball practice facility and a wrestling training facility.
Teague said that the wrestling and basketball practice facility could go in the same building, and that the current track could be moved elsewhere. The estimated timetable for completing the entire project is set at 6-8 years.
“Am I guaranteeing that all this will be done in 8 years?” Teague said. “No. But that’s our goal.”
Teague originally estimated that this project would cost between $80 and $125 million, though he is now saying that he suspected it would be higher.
He now puts the number around $190 million, but unlike the new Vikings Stadium this will be privately funded, though the feasibility of that is still being studied. And as of now there are no numbers being released regarding how much has been raised already. Teague is saying that there are some donors already on board and he is hoping to add others. Presenting to the regents was a major early step, he added.
The basketball practice facility appears to be the most donor-ready project. Teague explained to regents that there is a need to upgrade across the board to keep up with recruiting and because current facilities have become outdated.
U of M president Erik Kaler says of the new complex. “We are in the Big Ten and we are going to compete in the Big Ten.”