The new Saddleback College football team won’t be playing in its new stadium this fall, as had been expected.
According to the Orange County Register, the planned spring opening of the $62 million stadium is being pushed out nearly a year due to constant winter rains and delays in securing necessary approvals.
The 8,000-seat stadium in Mission Viejo broke ground in March of last year, but it took until November to complete the approval process with California Division of the State Architect, which must approve any major school construction projects in the state.
“Despite delays, I think everybody understands that those things happen and in the end, they are going to get everything they wanted,” Saddleback College president Elliot Stern told the South Orange County Community College District’s Board of Trustees, which oversees the college.
The project’s budget isn’t expected to change as a result of the delays.
The new stadium replaces a 3,800-seat structure built in 1976. The new facility will include a nine-lane running track and a new soccer practice field, along with other features. The existing practice fields and thrower’s park are being relocated to replace the golf driving range. The college has even envisioned the stadium being used as a practice facility for the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Olympics.