Cape Girardeau to dedicate $600,000 annually to Houck Stadium reconstruction project

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – The city of Cape Girardeau will dedicate $600,000 annually to Southeast Missouri State University’s multiphase reconstruction of Houck Stadium.

“It really allows us to be able to continue the momentum we’ve created after starting the first phase of the project,” SEMO Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Brady Barke said.

Barke said the $10.2 million in funding for the Houck Stadium renovation will allow for several growth opportunities. 

“We truly believe that this is a transformational project for the university, that as we look to the next 50 years of the university, there is a great opportunity to be able to invest in this project, this space, now,” he said.

Barke estimated that athletic events alone bring in about $1 million in visitor spending, but the intention is to use the facility for other events besides SEMO football and soccer.

“It creates an opportunity to generate some additional revenue to help us as a university financially, but then the effects of that, of bringing people here to participate in those, is certainly felt by the greater community,” he said.

And at Monday evening’s city council meeting, SEMO alum and former Redhawk football player Justin Martini noted the economic impact this project will have. 

“This is an investment in Cape Girardeau,” he said. “This is going to be a revenue source. The stadium itself is going to generate revenue. You’re also going to see other events taking place there. That’s going to bring that many more people to the community. They’re going to be spending more money, and that’s going to generate that much more revenue for the city.” 

Phase One of the project is expected to be completed by the end of July.

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