Here Are All the Changes Coming to Football Gameday

On Thursday, the UT System Board of Regents approved a $175 million proposal for an upgrade to Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, $125 million of which will be funded by gifts, and the remaining $50 million coming from bonds that will be paid for by ticket sales and premium seating. According to Vice President and Director of Athletics Chris Del Conte, $80 million has already been raised. 

The improvements encompass a south end zone renovation that Del Conte has previously mentioned, including new suites, clubs, loge boxes, sponsor amenities, modified fan seating, and an upgrade to the Moncrief-Neuhaus Athletic Center. According to UT documents, the remodel will, “complete the Stadium bowl,” a project long discussed by Texas Athletics.

With construction beginning in June 2019 and with a projected completion date of June 2021, fans will have some waiting to do as far as tangible changes to the physical stadium. But starting on Sept. 8, at the Texas home opener against Tulsa, fans will already notice momentous changes initiated by Del Conte. Here’s what we can expect to see:

San Jacinto Boulevard will henceforth be called Bevo Boulevard on gamedays. It’ll be a “carnival-like atmosphere,” according to Del Conte, which means no cars, food trucks, a DJ, and three bars. Approximately three and a half hours before kickoff, a Bevo parade will begin at 20th Street, and Bevo XV will traipse down his eponymous walkway into the stadium. An hour after that, the team will make a grand entrance from the north end of DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium. Happy hour pricing is in effect for the pregame fiesta, with $5 domestic beers, $6 premium beers, and $5 wine spritzers. Fans can watch other Big 12 games on two enormous LED screens, and 104.9 The Horn will broadcast from Bevo Boulevard. About 30 minutes before kickoff, a signal will come from inside the stadium that it’s time for fans to make their way in.

The LBJ School lawn will be known as Longhorn City Limits before kickoff. A different live band will play each home game, though none have been officially confirmed yet. As part of a partnership with C3 Presents, KLRU, and Stubb’s, the area will be one huge tailgate, combining what Del Conte has described as what Austin does best: food, football, and live music.

No more wristbands! The student section is general admission, and is now one continuous section in the south end zone, stretching to Section 30 on the southeast corner, where the Longhorn Band will also be relocated.

Wait, but then where do the visitors sit? Funny you should ask. Fans of Tulsa, USC, TCU and the like will be relegated to the upper northeast corner of the stadium.

Some concessions will be cheaper. No, the happy hour pricing out on Bevo Boulevard does not continue inside the stadium, but Texas issued the following concession prices for 2018: fountain soft drinks, candy, popcorn, and 20 oz. waters are $3; bottled 20 oz. soft drinks, hot dogs, peanuts, and nachos are $4; and souvenir soft drinks and liter waters are $5.

For much more, check out the September|October issue of the Alcalde, hitting homes in about three weeks for my feature on the complete history of Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. It details the stadium’s dramatic transformation from the 24,000-seat War Memorial Stadium to the 100,000-plus megalith we know today.

 

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