New Sports Field to Open in Fall 2013
A $3 million gift helps to bring men’s lacrosse to campus| From Investing in a new BU
Breaking ground for the New Balance Field on May 17 are (from left) Michael Lynch, BU assistant vice president and director of athletics, President Robert A. Brown, Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino (Hon.’01), John Withee, New Balance executive vice president and CFO, and Gary Nicksa, BU senior vice president for operations. Photo by Cydney Scott
In the first steps of a development that will bring field hockey back to campus and add a men’s varsity lacrosse team, the University broke ground last May for New Balance Field, an 111,000-square-foot project on Babcock Street that will effectively double BU’s field capacity.
Currently, three varsity teams and nearly 200 intramural teams vie for space on Nickerson Field. The new field, which will open in fall 2013, was made possible by a $3 million gift from athletic shoe manufacturer New Balance. The total cost of the field and a parking area is estimated at $24 million.
The open-air field, which will fill the BU-owned block surrounded by Babcock, Gardner, Alcorn, and Ashford Streets, will have a brick facade and stadium seating for 1,000. The field will be built above ground-level parking for 340 vehicles.
BU is jumping into Division I varsity men’s lacrosse at the right time, says Michael Lynch, assistant vice president and director of athletics. Currently 61 schools compete nationally at the Division I level, and Harvard is the only school in the Boston area with a Division I lacrosse team. “It’s a sport that is really hot here in New England,” he says. “We are hoping to be a national leader.”
In June, Lynch announced the appointment of Ryan Polley as the inaugural men’s head lacrosse coach. Polley has spent the last six seasons as an assistant coach at Yale, which was this year’s Ivy League tournament champion.