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WVU to bring Pride Practice Facility project back to campus

West Virginia University has identified the Med Fields located on the Health Sciences Campus as the best on-campus option for the Pride Practice Field and Facility being developed for the Mountaineer Marching Band.

“The convenient location next to the Health Sciences Center PRT Station, which was not previously available due to potential development plans, addresses transportation concerns related to an off-campus site, as well potential pedestrian safety issues associated with crossing Monongahela Boulevard to reach the former Hawley Field location,” said Keith Jackson, Philip J. Faini/Falbo Family Dean of the College of Creative Arts.

“The site also already features lighting, and the band will have priority access to the Med Fields and ample parking in the adjacent parking lots.”

The University renewed efforts to identify a suitable on-campus site after an October announcement outlining plans to shift the project to Mylan Park generated concern among some stakeholders.

Jackson said he understands the frustration as the efforts to create a Pride Practice Field and Facility, which began nearly five years ago, have taken longer than expected.

“The needs for all involved have evolved during that time, but our shared vision for the project and the commitment to our students and completing this project remain unchanged,” Jackson said.

The University Planning Committee has approved use of the site and the architect already involved in the project has been reengaged to design a field with the same amenities originally included in the first and future phases of the project. The new site will accommodate the planned turf field, storage facility and shelter.

It is anticipated the process to complete a new design and gather cost estimates could be finalized in the next six months. Then, a Request for Procurement for construction will be issued and site work will take several more months. The goal is for the turf field to be ready for the band to begin using the site by August 2025.

Until then, the band will continue to use its current practice area.

“Campus partners such as AthleticsFacilities, the Office of the Provost and the Division of Student Life have provided invaluable assistance throughout this process,” Jackson said. “I am also thankful to Mylan Park for its continued support and for being a tremendous community partner, and I am extremely grateful for the generous donations from supporters made through the WVU Foundation or WVU Alumni Band.”

Past and future donations will be used as originally intended — to fund the turf field which will still be known as Don Wilcox Field, as well as other needs that will enable the band to practice at its new on-campus home. No gifts held at the Foundation or funds from the University were transferred to Mylan Park in support of this project.

Make a gift in support of the Pride Practice Facility.

Gifts to the Pride Practice Facility are made through the WVU Foundation, the nonprofit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.

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