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Protective Stadium featured in Athletic Business 2022 Architectural Showcase

June 30, 2022 · Accolades, Projects

Protective Stadium is among 52 athletics, fitness and recreation facilities highlighted in Athletic Business‘ 35th annual Architectural Showcase, featuring some of the nation’s top facilities constructed or renovated within the past three years.

Built into an existing hillside nestled between established neighborhoods and the entertainment complex of the BJCC, the new 42,000-seat Protective Stadium was designed to exemplify the heritage of Birmingham and its surrounding context. A 360-degree concourse allows fans to stay connected to the action of the game and energetic atmosphere while circling the stadium and enjoying views of downtown Birmingham.

Totaling an expansive 835,000 square feet, Protective Stadium was designed to accommodate football, soccer, concerts, and other special events, and is home to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers’ Football, the Birmingham Legion FC and the Birmingham Stallions of the new United States Football League.

Thoughtful consideration was put into the selection of colors, materials and the structure of the stadium, including the scoreboard and light towers. Inspiration for the selections was influenced by Birmingham’s industrial heritage and landmarks. The design for Protective Stadium employs the use of red brick and black steel to seamlessly integrate the new building into the city.

The west side tower has an indoor club and club seating for 1,000. Two suite levels encompass a total of 34 suites, along with a press box for coaching, broadcast and other media. The south endzone has a concourse club and the north endzone has a “supporter” section for soccer fans during soccer matches and students and the marching band for football games.

Other features include outdoor party decks, a large entry plaza on the south end, at-grade access on the north end of the concourse, several large, multi-functional locker rooms and enough support space to accommodate a variety of events.

The stadium hosts suites and club seats with a Stadium Club to fill the need for premium accommodations. Populous collaborated with local architects to develop these areas, as well as the special UAB recruiting lounge and UAB home locker room, and worked with Protective Life to integrate its brand and signage throughout the stadium.

Populus and GMC collaborated on the design of Protective Stadium along with local architects, Charles Williams & Associates and Studio 2H Design.

Learn more about the project on pages 90-91 of the 2022 Architectural Showcase issue of Athletic Business!