Demolition of 98-year-old stadium in Chicago underway


Chicago Construction News staff writer

Ryan Field is being demolished to make way for a new facility to be constructed on the same site.

Northwestern University has launched a website, Rebuild Ryan Field, for updates on project milestones and efforts to minimize disruptions in the area.

Construction manager Central Street Consortium, a joint venture between Turner Construction Company and Walsh Construction, will release site updates throughout the project’s duration.
Valued at over $1.5 million, Ryan Field was one of the premier college stadiums in the country when it opened in 1926. Initially accommodating 25,000 spectators, expansions and the addition of the southern arc, pushed capacity to 47,000 seats.

In November 2023, the last game was played at this stadium.

The new stadium, funded privately, will have 35,000 seats and construction will start after the demolition of the old building and site preparation. The investment cost will be $800 million. NU has also signed a 15-year social benefits agreement, providing $10 million annually for various local programs.

Currently, work is ongoing on the western side of the stadium, with demolition of the north tower expected to begin in the coming days. Demolition of the press box is also set to begin in the next two to three weeks. Meanwhile, work continues on removing existing foundations and small architectural elements, testing and installing ground anchors, as well as installing utilities and drainage systems for the future stadium.


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