Exuberant crowd at Tindall Field opening
A sea of Tricolour ponchos made for a festive atmosphere Saturday as several hundred alumni, staff, faculty, Queen's friends and their families,witnessed the long-awaited rededication of Frank Tindall Field.
Named for legendary Queen's coach Frank Tindall, the state-of-the-art athletics facility will extend the playing season for Queen's and Kingston-community athletes and is a first step toward a new vision for Queen's Athletics.
Principal Tom Williams thanked members of the Tindall family who attended the opening and congratulated all who were involved with the project. The project also helps to address the current parking crunch at the university. A 580-space, two-level garage is located below the field and is set to open later this year.
"The opening of Tindall Field is the first step for Queen's Athletics in moving towards our vision of becoming the best in Canada,” say Leslie Dal Cin, Director of Athletics and Recreation. “Along with our new brand and visual identity the opening is part of an historic movement forward.”
With a drumroll provided by the Queen's Bands and an explosion of paper streamers, Queen's Athletics and Recreation unveiled their new logo at the game. The Queen's Bands performed, rallying the crowd before joining the parade to Richardson Stadium, where Queen's defeated Western 43 -16 in the Homecoming football game.
Artificial turf supplied by Field Turf, a leading producer of infill fields in North America, maximizes field use on Tindall, the most used field on Queen's campus, providing the same turf used by The Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball and the Denver Broncos of the National Football League.
Earlier this month, workers were busy stitching seams together of large pieces of artificial turf, then stretching them over the field base. Afterwards, the turf was infilled with a mixture of sand and gravel, making the artificial grass stand up and the seams disappear. The turf was then cut to insert lettering and logos for the new Queen's Athletics brand.
Built with students in mind the new field is another extension of Queen's broader learning and living environment. Close to student residences, the field and practice track will be available to casual as well as scheduled user groups including intramural athletics and recreation. The new Tindall Field provides opportunities for students to engage in the activities that help build the lasting memories many take away from Queen's.
“We're always encouraging students to get involved, whether it's through clubs, student government, or athletics,” says Alma Mater President Talia Radcliffe. “And in the midst of all the changes to facilities we're seeing on campus, Tindall Field helps lessen the impact by providing them with a safe, on-campus venue for many of their activities – that's definitely something to be excited about.”
The renewal of Tindall Field and its relocation adjacent to Mackintosh-Corry Hall – on the site of the original Richardson Stadium – is part of the university's overall field strategy to address improvements to sports fields on its main and west campuses.
“Tindall Field is one of several capital projects moving ahead on campus that are investments in the lasting heritage of Queen's University,” says Principal Tom Williams. “They are creating the resources to attract the best and brightest, in students, faculty and staff. These projects also honour the University's history, its alumni, and those who have believed in the University, and one of those people is Frank Tindall.”
Frank Tindall was a legendary figure in Queen's athletics, and a member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame. He first came to Queen's as football coach in 1939. He left to fight in World War 2, but he returned to Queen's in 1948, and was here until 1975. Under his leadership, Queen's football teams won eight intercollegiate titles. Frank had an enormous and lasting impact on his players, his colleagues and his University.
Tindall Field will continue to honour the Frank Tindall legacy, ensuring that this remains an excellent playing space for Queen's students, staff and faculty and for members of the Kingston community.
The field's new accessibility features include barrier-free access from the surface lot on the corner of Union and Albert streets around the field complex to Mackintosh-Corry Hall. It is illuminated at night with high-efficiency lighting that will not interfere with the neighboring Queen's University Observatory activities in Ellis Hall, or nearby Victoria Hall residence. Lights are controlled from the Physical Education Centre and can be turned off an on according to booking times.
Work began in July 2007 on the $34.7-million project, consisting of a combined underground parking facility, which will be paid for through user fees, relocated surface parking and an artificial field complex, just south of Union Street and west of Mackintosh-Corry Hall. The three-lane rubberized practice track surrounding the playing field is scheduled to be ready later in October. The 580-space, two-level underground parking facility is scheduled for completion later this year.