After more than a decade of playing in the Cardinal Track and Soccer Stadium, the University of Louisville men’s and women’s soccer teams have moved into the largest collegiate soccer venue in the country, sporting a Birdair 24,000-square-foot PTFE fiberglass canopy roof over the grandstands.

“The University of Louisville now has the premier collegiate soccer stadium in the country. Birdair is proud to be a part of this monumental project,” said Michael Grant, project manager, Birdair Inc. “The Birdair canopy roof adds sophistication to the state-of-the-art facility and provides fans with protection from the weather.”

The stadium was designed by architectural firm The Estopinal Group with Abel Construction general contractor. Birdair’s scope of work included design, fabrication, supply and installation of the PTFE membrane, structural supporting steel and clamping system.

Athletic programs, particularly soccer, at the University of Louisville have enjoyed a lot of success, paving the way for a new, $18.5 million facility. However, the facility would not have been possible without a generous $5 million gift from Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn.

This state-of-the-art soccer stadium, named the Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn Stadium, will feature natural grass and seating for more than 5,300 people. The natural turf field will be surrounded by chair-back seating for 2,300 in the main grandstand, bleacher seating for 900 in the east end zone and two berms which can accommodate 2,100. Soccer-fans sitting in the grandstands will be protected from sun-overexposure or rain by Birdair’s expansive, weather-resistant roof.

The Lynn Stadium is the second-largest on-campus facility project the Cardinals have built, the first being Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium and its subsequent expansion.


All the Bells and Whistles

In addition to the pitch, the complex surrounding the area is fully loaded to ensure Louisville’s student athletes enjoy their experiences. The building features separate team locker rooms for the men and women home teams and opponents, along with coaches’ locker rooms and lounge areas. For improved security, student athletes and coaches will have to go through finger print access points to gain admission into the facility.

When Louisville’s student athletes are practicing or warming up before a match, they can take advantage of an approximately 700-square-foot indoor warm-up area designed to provide maximum space for training. Cardinal student athletes and coaches will also enjoy an 830-square-foot meeting/video room for scouting purposes. The complex also encompasses training and equipment rooms as well as separate coaching areas, ensuring Louisville’s coaching staffs close proximity to its wealth of resources.

Fans entering the soccer stadium will be greeted by six ticket windows. Upon gaining admission, they will pass by the main concession stand that features up to 14 queues, and more than 300 feet of dasher boards will be on display along the north side of the pitch.

Housed atop the grandstand at midfield, a press box offers ample amounts of room and amenities to accommodate those covering the game. Adjacent to the press box is a donor suite, along with a separate television suite, rooms for home and visiting radio, an area for the media as well as an operations room.


The Roofing Product

The Estopinal Group and Abel Construction tapped Birdair for its design and installation expertise as well as its unique PTFE membrane roof. PTFE, or polytetrafluoroethylene, is a Teflon®-coated woven fiberglass membrane that is extremely durable and weather resistant. PTFE fiberglass membranes can be installed in climates ranging from the frigid arctic to the scorching desert heat with a project life in some cases exceeding 30 years. PTFE fiberglass coating is chemically inert, and the low-surface free energy of the material results in an electrical grade fabric membrane which is readily rinsed by rainwater. It is also completely immune to UV radiation. This unique combination of inertness, thermal stability and surface properties make Birdair’s PTFE-coated fabric membrane ideal for projects requiring superior weather and fire resistance.

PTFE fiberglass is additionally Energy Star and Cool Roof Rating Council certified. During scientific tests of its solar properties, it was discovered that these fiberglass membranes reflect as much as 73 percent of the sun’s energy while holding just seven percent on its exterior surface. Certain grades of PTFE fiberglass can absorb 14 percent of the sun’s energy while allowing 13 percent of natural daylight and seven percent of re-radiated energy (solar heat) to transmit through.

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