Brennan Angel

A half-refurbished stadium filled with half new seating, contemporary architecture and updated utilities provides a perfect way to set the proper mood for the upcoming 2007-2008 sports season.

If you happen to be walking along California Street you will catch sight of the lavish Alex G. Spanos Stadium and Mustang Field, formerly known as Mustang Stadium.

It may look finished from the outside but this renovation project along with the expansion of the parking structure both have a long way to go.

Phase one of the construction project has provided approximately 4,000 additional seats, restrooms and a new press box. The project is now slowly inching its way into phase two.

The estimated completion date is set for 2010 and the overall cost for the stadium’s makeover totals $19,405,000.

Phase two of the renovation, which includes removal of the existing east 5,855-seat stadium, is expected to maximize the total seating capacity to approximately 22,000, and provide the required restroom and support facilities needed to serve the entire building.

Phase two is still in beginning stages as aesthetic designs are just now starting to develop even though contractors haven’t yet been hired.

Despite the shortcomings the stadium is still set and ready for the fall sports season.

“We are very excited. You don’t know how good it made our team feel last year to see the line (of fans) stretched around the corner just to watch us,” Cal Poly running back James Noble said. “We are happy that the stadium is finished so more people can see us. We look forward to playing hard for the fans.”

The Cal Poly men’s soccer team will christen play in the recently renovated stadium on August 21 with an exhibition game against the defending Pac-10 conference-champions California.

The restored stadium has even found a way to give back to alumni, friends and fans.

Donations are welcomed to help fund the stadium retrofit. Donators will be honored with an inscribed paver stone, which will be laid in the new Mustang Memorial Plaza.

Whether it’s simply getting friends together to honor a favorite teacher, coach, classmate or just to get your name etched in stone, anyone can become a part of Mustang Memorial Plaza.

Donations range from $300 to $1,000 depending on the size of the paver stone desired.

The heart of the plaza contains 18 granite and copper accented columns, honoring the 16 players, team manager and team booster who were killed in a plane crash Oct. 29,1960 in Toledo, Ohio following a game with Bowling Green.

You can check out Mustang Memorial Plaza at the southwest corner of the stadium where it serves as the main entrance to the facility.

The renovation of the stadium has gone above and beyond with its architecture, it serves not only as an abundant gathering place during the school year but also brings together all sports lovers into an ideal location.

“The guys love the new stadium. It’s something we’ve talked and dreamed about for years,” head football coach Rich Ellerson said.

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