In September 2013, Sheahon Zenger announced the design process had started with HNTB and in early 2014, a brochure was sent to Williams Fund Members with cost estimates ranging between $80m-$150m. In May 2014, Zenger said HTNB were in the final stages of developing its renderings. After the track was removed from Memorial Stadium, Zenger told the KC Star that HNTB was ready to present its design plans to Kansas officials. Following this, athletic department officials would begin taking them to major donors.
Jump to September 2017, four years after Zenger’s initial announcement, Zenger and Kansas officials announce the Raise the Chant campaign, a $350m fundraising campaign to renovate several athletic facilities, the majority of which ($315m) would be allocated to Memorial Stadium. Renderings of the proposed renovations are released with fans and media alike being underwhelmed by the uninspiring illustrations. Then in November 2017, the Kansas Board of Regents approve an estimated $26m indoor practice facility but Zenger and co. have no idea where the facility will be built.
Said Kansas Chancellor Dr. Douglas A. Girod in an interview prior to the Regents meeting, “First of all, it’s really multiple projects. The indoor practice facility is the first. Then there’s two to three, maybe even four phases of the stadium, and we will step through those as resources and interest allow. So whether we ever get to all $300 million or not, we’ve had indications from our donors that they want to see what the whole thing would look like and then we’ll start working on it in pieces.”
Now in December 2017, Zenger still has no idea where the indoor practice facility will be built or when. Dr. Girod also intimates officials aren’t sure whether the entire funds estimated to renovate Memorial Stadium will be raised and donors still want to see what the final renderings will look like before they will donate.
Phase 1 Update (March 2018):
- $15 million Indoor Practice Facility will now cost $26 million
- The Indoor Practice Facility, which was supposed to break ground after the end of the 2017 Football season (October) and be completed prior to the start of the 2018 season, still hasn’t broken ground
- Final drawings of the Indoor Practice Facility still haven’t been made public
- Final location of the Indoor Practice Facility still hasn’t been finalized. The athletic department has no idea where this facility will be located
So over four years later, we have to ask ourselves…
WHAT DOES ZENGER DO?