As part of several upgrades at Bobby Dodd Stadium, Georgia Tech athletics will install an artificial playing surface. The removal of Grant Field’s previous natural grass turf began in late May and the installation of a turf system manufactured by Shaw Sports Turf is expected to be completed in late July.
The installation of an artificial surface will allow for Grant Field to be utilized on a far more regular basis than it currently can be. The new surface will expand opportunities for Georgia Tech student-athletes and teams to train and practice inside Bobby Dodd Stadium. Additionally, it will allow Tech athletics to host many more non-football events inside the stadium including campus events, concerts and other sporting events.
Financially, the installation of an artificial surface at Bobby Dodd Stadium will decrease expenses associated with maintaining a natural field while also providing opportunities for significant revenue boosts associated with hosting external events. No state funds are being used for the project.
“Installing an artificial surface will allow us to utilize Grant Field 365 days a year, as opposed to the very limited number of events, practices and workouts that can safely be held on a natural surface. The switch to an artificial field will allow Bobby Dodd Stadium to continue as one of college football’s best stadiums, as well as become a space that the entire campus community can enjoy more often,” said Todd Stansbury, Georgia Tech director of athletics.
The installation of the Legion NXT surface marks the return of artificial turf at Bobby Dodd Stadium, major college football’s oldest on-campus venue. Grant Field had an artificial surface for 24 seasons from 1971-94.
“I’m grateful to our athletics administration, led by Todd Stansbury, and our friends at Shaw Sports Turf for all they’ve done to make it possible for us to install a state-of-the-art playing surface in Bobby Dodd Stadium,” Georgia Tech football head coach Geoff Collins said. “An artificial turf field will give us the ability to practice and train inside the stadium on a regular basis year-round, which will be a huge advantage.”
The Legion NXT turf system is Shaw Sports Turf’s newest fiber system. Legion NXT is a hybrid system that offers realistic aesthetics with durability. It is 20% more robust and shows minimal signs of wear up to 80,000 lisport cycles. The Geofill infill system is 100% natural and plays natural, resulting in vertical deformation, rotational resistance and energy restitution. The Geofill infill is made of coconut husks and fibers, which is a rapidly renewable resource. The infill also requires much less water than natural grass, thus resulting in significant levels of conservation.
Additional upgrades at Bobby Dodd Stadium include a new fan- and energy-friendly LED lighting system, a new sound system, improved stadium signage, and a refresh of restrooms throughout the stadium.