Apogee Stadium, the home of North Texas football, is the long-awaited replacement to Fouts Field and the centerpiece of the Mean Green Athletic Village.
Opened in 2011, Apogee Stadium was designed by the same team that created the spectacular Dallas Cowboys Stadium, award-winning architects HKS Sports and Entertainment Group and Manhattan Construction, and they brought some of the same touches to Denton. Apogee features two huge, state-of-the-art video boards, 21 luxury suites, 750 club seats, high-tech facilities for broadcast and print media, banquet rooms and an 1,800-square-foot team apparel store.
The stadium seats 30,850 in a horseshoe-shaped bowl, putting fans close to the action and offering excellent sight lines from every seat. A spacious concourse runs under the seats and boasts 23 concession stands for food and drink vendors.
At the open end of the horseshoe is the giant high-definition scoreboard and videoboard with a display screen measuring 27 feet high and 47 feet wide, directly behind the south end zone and towering over the Mean Green’s tunnel entrance to the field. A second videoboard, 15 feet high and 27 feet wide, stands behind the corner of the north end zone.
Behind the north end zone is one of Apogee Stadium’s two signature features, giant wing-shaped grandstands which echo the shape of the Mean Green’s eagle logo. The tips of the grandstand’s wings reach 106 feet above the playing field.
Apogee’s other distinguishing characteristic is its unique green ecological design. Apogee Stadium is the first newly-constructed college football stadium in the nation to be awarded a LEED Platinum Certification, the highest level of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design status.
The United States Green Building Council evaluated the stadium and awarded the certification, signifying Apogee Stadium’s use of renewable and recycled materials, reduced energy and water consumption and decreased CO2 emissions.
Beginning in early 2012, three wind turbines began providing approximately half a million kilowatt hours per year for the North Texas Eagle Point power grid, effectively eliminating 323 metric tons of CO2 from being emitted annually into the atmosphere while providing energy to the stadium and surrounding buildings.
"This is a great accomplishment for UNT and strongly underscores our commitment to sustainability," said North Texas President V. Lane Rawlins. "UNT is a leader in environmental research and sustainability, and the fact that we have the first LEED Platinum football stadium is an example of our commitment and our plans for the future."
According to Greg Whittemore, project manager with the HKS, sustainability was at the forefront of the stadium’s design.
"A football stadium is not the typical LEED-Platinum candidate,” Whittemore said. “It took creative thinking on the parts of the design and construction teams in conjunction with the UNT System and North Texas Athletics. Today, Apogee Stadium's LEED Platinum status is a testament to the team's dedication to sustainability."
"From the wind turbines to the native-landscaped surroundings to the eco-friendly building materials, Apogee Stadium is a one-of-a-kind green venue," said HKS's Chris Mundell, who served as the project's LEED consultant. "This high-performance building design will reduce energy costs by approximately 25 percent. The wind turbines will also substantially offset the external energy demand."