Renovations start with a smash at Kinnick Stadium - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Renovations start with a smash at Kinnick Stadium

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

Smashes and crashes inside Iowa's largest stadium this week are creating a better game day experience for fans.

Demolition began on Friday at Kinnick Stadium, the home of Hawkeye football, on parts of the north end zone to make way for a $98 million renovation project.  An area untouched since the 1980's with the exception of new scoreboards that were put in 2013. One of the two scoreboards was the first to fall on Friday.

"They tore out the scoreboards the bleachers and just today they began the demolition phase which will take down that north end zone down to the ground and  then start building it back up," said Matt Henderson, University of Iowa Senior Associate Athletic Director.

The project, known was "Kinnick Edge," is the first big renovation done at the stadium since 2006 when work was done on the south end zone and the new press box. Once completed it'll look much like its opposite end zone with the exception being the second level. 

On the second level will be a glassed concourse where fans can look out onto the field. It will also be an expansion of club seating with added amenities. 

"We've added loge boxes as an element which is kind of like an outdoor suite, we're adding premium seating, larger concession stand opportunities, better restrooms, wider seats, wider aisles for the fan experience," Henderson said.

Construction on the new north end zone is expected to be finished by the 2019 season, with the seating portion done in time for the upcoming 2018 season.

The north end zone will lose close to 1,500 general admission seats. but adds 1,700 premium seating options.

ADA seating options will also increase because of the renovations.

Some of the bricks from the north end zone were salvaged prior to the start of construction. They are being sold by the UI Athletics Department on bravosportsmarketing.com.

Henderson said the project is funded entirely by revenue made from the athletics department and private donations.

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