Hartford, Conn. - The Trinity College Board of Trustees has approved the start of construction for new stands and a three-story support building and press box for both Jessee/Miller and Robin L. Sheppard Field. Construction will commence this spring on Phase I of the overall project with the intention of being ready for the fall 2020 field hockey and football seasons. Phase II will include new entrances to the fields, additional restrooms, and re-configured visitor seating for on the west side of Jessee/Miller Field. This project will impact Trinity's field hockey, football, men's lacrosse, women's lacrosse and both track & field programs.
"We are grateful for the resounding commitment of President Berger-Sweeney and our Board of Trustees as we transform the spaces at Jessee/Miller and Sheppard Fields," said Trinity Athletic Director Drew Galbraith. "We thank the alumni/ae and friends of our programs whose generosity will make these changes possible, and are excited for the positive impact on over 250 student-athletes in the six sports that use these two facilities. These spaces will allow us to showcase the very best of Trinity athletics and also bring prominent events to our campus and our community."
Sheppard Field, where Trinity's field hockey and women's lacrosse teams practice and play, will feature a new 350-seat and fully ADA-Accessible raised set of bleachers. The current bleachers will be repurposed on the spectator sideline to bring total capacity to 1,000. Jessee/Miller Field (named for legendary football coaches Dan Jessee and Don Miller), will have a new 2,600 seat and fully ADA-accessible raised grandstand. Stands will now stretch from goal line to goal line, and the grandstand will have a similar number of seat as the old bleachers but with aisles and railings.
"I am excited about the potential benefits that the addition of our new press box and bleachers at Sheppard Field will have for our student-athletes," said Trinity Head Field Hockey Coach Anne Parmenter. "I am looking forward to hosting the 2021 NCAA Division III Final Four, where the college can showcase its outstanding athletic facilities."
"The new press box bordering the track will help enhance our home competitions, better our recruiting efforts, and give us new resources for practice in the fall and spring," added Trinity Head Track and Field Coach John Michael Mason. "We are very excited to see this project come to fruition."
The support building, which will be two-sided and serve both fields, will feature restrooms on the first floor, warming rooms for participating athletes on the second floor, press box and viewing rooms on the third floor, and a filming deck on the roof. The press box, filming deck and viewing rooms from the new building will provide views of both fields. The viewing rooms will have a total capacity of approximately 60 people for pre- and post-game functions along with other events. The press box will support both fields and include space for timing, scoreboard operation, public-address announcers, working media and other gameday functions.
"The improvements to our facility will be transformative not only for a number of sports here at Trinity, but will make a huge impact on the campus," said Trinity Head Football Coach Jeff Devanney. "The upgrade will be highly visible to every potential student who stands in the lobby of the admissions building. It will also provide a facility that will allow us to host events, bringing more people onto our beautiful campus. This project will have the obvious implications for our football program (recruiting, better fan experience), but I believe it goes far beyond the impact on any one sport."