Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Indy Eleven Stadium - Part 2

I considered adding this as an update to the previous post, but decided that it was getting a little long.  So I'll reference it here for those who haven't seen it yet.  If you haven't seen it yet, you might want to start there and come back after you've read it since it gives a lot of my thoughts on the issue of the stadium, which I'll not include here.  Go ahead, we can wait.

*whistles and shuffles feet*

Back?  Good, glad you weren't scared away with that novella.  I know, it was a bit long.  Sorry about that.  So moving forward with my most recent idea.  I'm thinking way out of the box on this one. You ready?

Carroll Stadium!

Kind of...

I was so caught up in looking for open, or what I considered unused, areas and my issues with the constructability of building a new stadium in the same location as the existing stadium that I didn't give the area as much consideration as it deserved.  Until recently when I was traveling through another portion of IUPUI's campus and saw two garages and a parking lot next to each other.  Guess what is around Carroll Stadium?  A parking garage and three parking lots (sidenote: why do I feel like I can never find a parking spot on IUPUI's campus when they have this many lots...), which are currently being used for game day parking.  What if the stadium was constructed there?

It's a bit snug to put Chicago Fire's Toyota Park in that space, but I'm just using that as a conceptual basis anyway.  If you trim off the stadium on the north and south ends and put additional seats on the east and west sides (similar to Estadio Municipal de Braga as I mentioned in Part 1), then I think it fits in the land between Vermont Street and New York Street, west of Barnhill Drive.  The downside to this location is that a roughly 1,000 space parking lot is displaced (currently being used as Lot B for the Eleven games), Beauty Street is removed, and part of what is being used as Lot A is eliminated.

Obviously, that's a lot of spots removed from IUPUI's campus. However, what if the rest of Lot A was converted into a new parking garage and wrapped into the cost of the stadium?  I found a reputable source online which tells me that a general cost of a parking garage of that size in Indianapolis would be approximately $16,000/space.  So I just added $16M to the cost of the stadium.  Perhaps IUPUI would be willing to share that cost or work out a deal with them so that they receive a portion of the fees received from the use of the garage.


  • Appears to be able to fit in the space and revised to a preferred North-South alignment.
  • The team can still play at Carroll Stadium while the new one is being built.
  • It's in a location that people have grown to appreciate due to its proximity to downtown.
  • Maintains a relationship with IUPUI, who also get to keep a renovated track stadium.  Take down the temporary bleachers but keep the suites?
  • Removes a large amount of parking spaces for IUPUI's students/faculty until the new garage is built. Also affects the team's parking for game days.
  • Potentially increases the overall cost of the stadium because of the cost of the new garage.
FINAL ASSESSMENT - A lot more potential than I original saw.

Through all of my research and evaluation, I think that the Beauty Avenue site has as much potential as the Sand Street alternative and the 16th and Fall Creek alternatives, which are the two that I decided had the most promise from my Part 1 alternatives.  Though these are just my thoughts as a fan with not nearly as much time on my hands as these two posts would make you believe so hopefully some information will start to be released as the team looks to start talking with the State Legislature again.


Jeff C. said...

Intriguing possibility, and one I hadn't considered before. I can tell, though, that you neither work nor attend classes at IUPUI. Parking is *the* number one issue on campus for this commuter school, and anything that would disrupt parking for one or more years would ultimately have to yield a net increase in available spaces, not simply restore the status quo; otherwise, from a campus perspective, it's not worth it. Some years ago, when the garage was being built on Blackford Street north of Michigan, the university had to create satellite lots at the old Bush Stadium and run shuttle buses--and the students cried bloody murder. Bush Stadium is no long an option, of course, so removing what are generally regarded as the most desirable spaces on campus for a couple of years would require another temporary solution (and again, student complaints would be loud, vociferous, and understandable).

This would, in short, be a great option for the team. But I don't see it as a great option for the university. And unless it's a great option for the university, it's not going to happen.

Drew said...

Thanks for the comments Jeff and the reference in the Big Soccer Forums.

I did attend some classes at IUPUI, but only during the summer (a long long time ago) and I can tell you even during the summer I was not impressed with the parking there. I read that IUPUI is 99% commuter and that parking is always a concern, but I've never understood why it is so difficult. Is it the way the lots are dispersed, or how who gets what and where, or something entirely? I also read that there are approximately 20,000 spaces on campus. That seems like a lot even with a commuter campus. It's one of those issues I've always peripherally known about, but never dove into finding more about it.

I would agree that nothing should be built until any loss of parking spaces was addressed first, which I didn't state here, but think I mentioned in the Reddit discussions. The garage has to be built first, then you go from there.

I would also say that "what is a great option for the university" and what is a great option for the students don't always necessarily align. While you would think that educational facilities should think about the students first, that's not always the case. Hence, the university's thoughts of privatizing the parking system, thereby removing the students from the discussions of what happens.

I was trying to take an overall view of Indianapolis for potential locations without getting too carried away with the nuts-and-bolts of actually making them work. That's for somebody else to actually get paid to do. The IUPUI lots seemed like a reasonable location for that level of detail. Obviously, there are always concerns with constructing in downtown and the Eleven would be naive to not get input from all stakeholders, and that should include IUPUI students if they saw this as one of their viable alternatives. Only time will tell on whether that is the case.

I do know that Peter Wilt has said they need/want 10 acres for the stadium and that site where I show it is not that large. Though that may just be their conservative desire for acreage.

Again, thanks for the comments.

Randall Porter said...

It appears the city looking on delvoping south of the RR tracks downtown. This would work well with any expansion if the Convention Center and new hotels. Now military park is definitely a no! It has significant historic value and the city and state leader would revolt over it. Military Park during the summer is the cities's festival place. Those fesrtivals have more fans than the 11.