Colorado athletic director Rick George says there are no plans to raise student fees for athletics or mandatory seat donation levels for football season-ticket holders to help fund facilities improvements at Folsom Field.

While numerous student fees have increased dramatically over the years at CU, the student fee for athletics hasn't been raised since the early 1990s.

"They will not be raised for this," George said. "It's all going to be private and corporate money."

The CU Board of Regents approved a plan for $142 million in renovations and new construction around the stadium nearly two weeks ago. No dates have been set for construction to begin because George must raise approximately $47 million, one-third of the total cost. George said approximately $10 million of that already has been pledged.

Rick George
Rick George

The plan calls for a 173,000-square-foot addition to Folsom Stadium's northeast corner, as well as an indoor football practice facility and two new outdoor practice fields to be built east of the stadium on Franklin Field.

That area has been one of the most popular tailgating areas for fans for years and George said it will still be capable of hosting at least 230 cars on game days. The same area will be available for student parking at night to access the campus recreation center and athletic fields.

If a person stands on Franklin Field today, it's difficult to see how the area can possibly have enough room for a full-size indoor practice facility, two full-size outdoor practice fields and a separate area with room to park 230 cars.

George said the footprint for those parts of the plan actually extends beyond the area currently occupied by Franklin Field to be even with the north edge of the Dal Ward Center.

Franklin Field is also heavily used by CU club sports teams. CU's football practice fields are currently located north of Boulder Creek next to married and family housing. When the project is complete, those fields will replace the Franklin Field area for use by club sports.

In addition to still hosting tailgating in the Franklin Field area, CU could open part of indoor practice facility to host pregame social area for season-ticket holders and donors similar to what is done on the practice courts at the Coors Events Center prior to basketball games.

"It will seat 1,000 to 2,000 people that we will be able to monetize and generate revenue from on football game day," George said. "There may be a conference that we can put in there on certain days. So we believe the building will be a multi-purpose use

Office space for coaches in other sports to be built under the suite level on the east side of the stadium is also part of the plan along with renovations to the Dal Ward Center.

Another aspect of the plan that will help generate new revenue is the addition of new suites, loge boxes and a club seating area on the north end of the stadium. Despite those additions, George said the capacity of Folsom Field is expected to decrease by a few hundred seats because of the new building in the northeast corner.

Contact staff writer Kyle Ringo at ringok@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/kyleringo.