Baylor University’s Clyde Hart Track and Field Stadium was completed in 2014. Like the adjacent McLane Football Stadium site, the existing property was below the 100-year flood elevation of the Brazos River. Raising the entire site above the 100-year flood elevation would be not only prohibitively expensive but could worsen the flooding of nearby properties.
After discussions with Populous Architects and Baylor staff, the track and field stadium was raised to the 25 year flood elevation, and an earthen embankment surrounding the stadium was built to protect the track and field surface from the 50-year flood. This grassy ridge also doubles as an informal seating area to view the track and field events.
Two small stormwater pump stations were installed that drain the 100-year runoff from the track and field in less than 24 hours during a 50-year flood of the Brazos River. The pump stations also prevent saturation of the base material under the track during a 50-year flood which could damage the $1 million synthetic track surface and its underlying pavement section. The base material consists of porous rock and perforated pipes that collect ground water and send it to the pump stations.
The Clyde Hart Track and Field Stadium project is sustainable and cost-effective during extreme flooding conditions. Walker Partners’ design protected Baylor University’s investment and helped transform an unusable floodplain into an eye-catching sports destination.
completion date: 2014
location: waco, tx