Aerial view in 2012
|Location||81 Central Avenue
New Haven, Connecticut
|Broke ground||August 1913|
|Opened||November 21, 1914|
($17.7 million in 2014 dollars)
|Architect||Charles A. Ferry
(Class of 1871)
|Yale Bulldogs (NCAA) (1914–present)
New York Giants (NFL) (1973–1974)
Connecticut Bicentennials (NASL) (1976–1977)
1995 Special Olympics World Summer Games
|Location||Chapel St. and Yale Ave., New Haven, Connecticut|
|Architect||Charles A. Ferry; Sperry Engineering Co.|
|NRHP Reference #||87000756|
|Added to NRHP||February 27, 1987 |
|Designated NHL||February 27, 1987 |
The Yale Bowl is a football stadium in New Haven, Connecticut on the border of West Haven, about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) west of the main campus of Yale University. Completed in 1914, the stadium seats 61,446, reduced by renovations from the original capacity of 70,896, and is the home of the Yale Bulldogs football team. It hosted the New York Giants of the National Football League in 1973 and 1974, while Yankee Stadium was being renovated and Giants Stadium was under construction. The Giants won just one of the dozen home games they played in New Haven in those two seasons.
The Yale Bowl is currently the largest university-owned stadium by capacity in the second tier of college football, NCAA Division I FCS. (Tennessee State University rents the larger off-campus LP Field used by the NFL's Tennessee Titans).
Through its inspiration of the design and naming of the Rose Bowl, its name is the origin of the name of college football's post-season games ("bowl games") and, by extension, of the NFL's "Super Bowl".
Ground was broken on the stadium in August 1913, built by excavating the field area and then building up a berm around the perimeter with the excavated earth to create an elliptical bowl. It was the first bowl-shaped stadium in the country, and provided inspiration for the design of such stadiums as the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Rose Bowl, and Michigan Stadium. The current scoreboard (notable for the time clock being arranged vertically instead of horizontally) was added in 1958, and in 1986 the current press box was added. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1987.
The facility was designed to partially echo the campus's Neo-Gothic design. As such, parts of the façade were treated with acid to imitate the effects of aging. As a result, the stadium required constant upkeep and renovation to prevent deterioration exacerbated by the typically harsh winters in New Haven. As of summer, 2005, many of the outside retaining walls and portal entries were deteriorating as a result. However, in the spring and summer of 2006, the bowl underwent a partial renovation, which was finished just in time for the Yale home-opener on Saturday, September 16, 2006.
During the 1970s, the "Bowl" hosted several concerts. The Grateful Dead played a notable show here on July 31, 1971, which was released as Road Trips Volume 1 Number 3. A 1980 concert featuring the Eagles, Heart, and The Little River Band on June 14 proved to be the finale for the venue, as opposition from neighbors became increasingly vehement. A picture from this final show can be seen in packaging of the vinyl edition of the Eagles double live album, issued later that year, though no recordings from the event are included on the discs. A planned Paul McCartney concert was scheduled for June 1990, but because of neighborhood opposition the New Haven show was cancelled and the date was rescheduled for Chicago.
The stadium has hosted many soccer matches over the years and served as home field for the Connecticut Bicentennials of the North American Soccer League during the 1976 and 1977 seasons. Yale Bowl was a candidate as a possible playing site when the United States hosted the World Cup in 1994. However, two other venues in the region were chosen instead: Foxboro Stadium in Massachusetts and Giants Stadium in New Jersey.
On Friday, October 5, 2001, the closing ceremony of the Yale Tercentennial was held at the Yale Bowl. Guests included Tom Wolfe '57, William F. Buckley '50, Sesame Street's Big Bird, Paul Simon '96, and Garry Trudeau '70.
- Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2014. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-01-23.
- "Yale Bowl". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-10-03.
- James H. Charleton (December 1985). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination: Yale Bowl". National Park Service. and Accompanying aerial photo, from 1985
- Hartford Courant: Yale Bowl Loses World Cup Bid
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