Florida Atlantic University received its largest gift to date for its new on-campus stadium. The school plans to name the stadium’s scoreboard with permanent signage after the donor who made the major contribution. The new stadium is set to open October 15 when the team hosts Western Kentucky. The $70million project will be able to hold 30,000 spectators and features 6,000 premium seats. This past week FAU released a projected economic impact study which estimates that the school will be able to generate $1.8 million on game days.
The stadium is part of a larger on campus project known as Innovation Village. The overall plan also includes residence halls, shopping, and dining establishments. Innovation Village is instrumental in the school’s strategy to create a stronger on-campus experience which at the centerpiece of the plan is the new open-air facility.
Another neat aspect of the project is that the FAU athletic department has utilized the interactive stadium software, Virtual Venue, provided by IOMEDIA. This “Virtual Venue” allows fans the ability to navigate the stadium and get price and donation information for any seat in the facility. Additionally the website enables fans to get a sense of what it would be like to sit in the seats they are looking at with a “seat view” feature. People who visit this site are also able to chat with an online ticket representative and can see further benefits for choosing different seating areas.
FAU is one of a growing number of schools to use IOMEDIA’s Virtual Venue. The list includes Penn State, UCLA, and the University of Washington. We have previously looked at how Ballena Technologies has helped athletic departments with their ticketing and reseating initiatives. Both of these companies’ services enhance the seat selection process for development offices, donors, and fans. As 3D virtual venue technology continues to evolve at the college level it will be interesting to see what new features will be incorporated that will add further value.