Friday, April 25, 2014
Pardon Broncos' dust -- no fans in camp
By Jeff Legwold
The Denver Broncos formally took a bite out of the summer schedule for many of their most loyal followers Friday.
The team announced its training camp practices at their complex in south suburban Denver, a summertime staple for many, would not be open to the public because of construction of a new indoor practice complex as well as an extensive remodeling to the main building where most of the team’s offices are located.
The parking area that has been used for the majority of fan parking at training camp in the past is filled with construction equipment as well as a huge mound of earth created when the hole was dug for the foundation of the new indoor complex, which will include a full-size field. The entire project is expected to cost $35 million and be completed during the upcoming season.
The team will have three workouts open to the public at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on July 27, July 30 and Aug. 2.
In a statement team president Joe Ellis said:
While we are disappointed in being unable to host fans at our facility during training camp this summer, we look forward to accommodating them for multiple practices at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The safety and comfort of our fans are top priorities, and unfortunately the construction of the new indoor practice field as well as the renovations to our existing building present a number of safety and logistical issues. The improvements made to our facility will be spectacular and significantly enhance the fan experience for training camps at Dove Valley for years to come.
The Broncos will have more room for fans to attend training camp in 2015 and beyond. Last summer the Broncos set an attendance record at their Dove Valley complex when 41,925 fans combined attended 15 open workouts -- the Broncos didn’t have bleachers so fans sat on a grassy berm -- in addition to 44,439 who attended the team’s scrimmage at the stadium.
When the project is completed, the Broncos say they should have three times as much space to accommodate fans.
It all means a rite of summer for many in the Rocky Mountain region will have to be delayed for a year.