Virginia Breaks Ground on Football Operations Center

In September 2018, UVA’s Board of Visitors approved a master plan that would transform the athletics precinct on North Grounds. Nearly four years later, UVA officials finally broke ground on one of the centerpieces of the project, a 90,000-square football operations center that’s scheduled to open in the spring of 2024.

The $80 million building will include locker rooms, strength and conditioning space, nutrition spaces, meeting rooms, coaches’ offices, video operations and sports medicine areas for treatment and recovery.

virginia“This is a huge, huge day,” University of Virginia head football coach Tony Elliott said. “It’s a big day, and it’s a landmark day, actually, for the institution, for the athletic department, for the football program.”

The Master Plan’s first phase, two lighted natural-grass practice fields, was completed in the summer of 2020. But the COVID-19 pandemic hindered fundraising for the remaining phases, and Virginia athletic director Carla Williams’ patience was tested.

The Master Plan also includes plans for a new Olympic sports center. Fundraising for that project is ongoing, but Williams said she hopes construction will start in the spring of 2023 and be completed in the spring of 2025.

“These facilities—the football operations center and the soon-to-come Olympic sports complex—allow students to maximize their UVA experience,” Williams said, “and them to continue to be that magnet that draws donors, alums, the University community and the broader community together in a way that only sports can do.”

“Facilities or not,” Elliott said, “I’m just excited that this is the place that I found and got confirmation that it was the right place for me to come lead. And now that we have the commitment of the facilities, now we can really, really, really go to work on trying to build the model program in college football.”

Elliott took over in December for Bronco Mendenhall, who stepped down after six seasons as the Wahoos’ head coach.