Union Public Schools began demolition on the west side of the Union Tuttle stadium on Jan. 9. The stadium was originally built in 1976. The project is in preparation for the construction of a new $42 million stadium and fine arts facility, which also includes significant renovations in the high school. The new stadium complex will include improved accessibility on the “home” side, including redesigned concessions and restroom facilities, as well as the creation of a new fine arts addition at the north end zone of the football field to serve the Union Renegade Regiment Marching Band.
Teardown of the stadium’s west side will take six to eight weeks. The new stadium is expected to open in 2021, followed by the fine arts addition in 2022.
In attendance were Superintendent Dr. Kirt Hartzler; Associate Superintendent Charlie Bushyhead, who is leading construction of the new facility; Dr. Wesley Jarman (superintendent from 1975-1990), who oversaw the construction of the original stadium; and Gil Cloud, who formerly served as athletic director.
“Union Tuttle Stadium has served us well for 43 years, but it’s time that we make improvements to better serve all of our students and patrons,” said Superintendent Hartzler. “We will make it up to our fans in the 2021 season, when we host more home games in a new stadium. It will definitely be worth the wait, as the fan experience will be greatly enhanced.”
Union plans to host three or more football games next fall. Spectators will be temporarily reassigned to the east and north bleachers for the 2020 season.
Other additions include a new wrestling practice area, an expanded weight room, and locker room, as well as a new press box. The final phase of the project will include high school interior renovations providing new spaces for the arts, volleyball and spirit groups.
In the last two years alone, Union Tuttle Stadium has hosted 866 events. Union’s first varsity football game in the old stadium took place on Sept. 24, 1976.