Inside look at Protective Stadium and its new seat installation (video & photos)

Protective Stadium
Jefferson County Commissioner Jimmie Stephens and UAB Head Coach Bill Clark at Protective Stadium. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Protective Stadium reached another milestone this week with the installation of their new seats in the center of the stadium. How do they look and feel? Very comfortable. Just ask UAB Head Coach Bill Clark.

The countdown is on. In 122 days, UAB will play its inaugural game at Protective Stadium against Liberty University. 

It feels like a lifetime ago when on that December 2018 day, civic, university, business and community leaders gathered to break ground on the vacant land across from the Uptown Entertainment District, announcing the construction of a new stadium.  I was there covering the event for Bham Now. There were doubters then, even at the groundbreaking. Now they are believers.

Three years later, despite obstacles such as the closure and rebuilding of I-59/20 and a global pandemic, the Magic City will have a new stadium and UAB Football a home. 

Below are photos and video of the inside of Protective Stadium.

Protective Stadium
New seats installed at Protective Stadium. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now
Protective Stadium
Panoramic view of Protective Stadium. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now
Protective Stadium
Panoramic view of Protective Stadium. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Some facts about Protective Stadium:

Capacity: 45,000

Construction Progress by the Numbers:

  • 4,240,000 pounds of rebar tied (2120 tons)
  • 670,000 bricks placed
  • 150,000 square feet of elevated concrete
  • 31,000 feet of plumbing pipe installed (5.8 miles)
  • 17,000 feet of duct work installed (3.2 miles) 
  • 680,000 feet of conduit installed (129 miles)

Games This Fall/Winter

UAB Football
Photo via Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now

Protective Stadium’s calendar is already filling up. This fall, the new venue will host five UAB home games. The site is also hosting the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s (AHSAA)  Super 7 Football Championships between December 1-3. And this week, the TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl announced they will be playing their 15th Annual game on December 28th at Protective Stadium.

BJCC on a Roll

Aerial View of Legacy Arena and Grounds
A drone’s eye view of the new and improved Legacy Arena and grounds. Rendering courtesy of Populous.

The addition of Protective Stadium and modernization to Legacy Arena is making the BJCC a prime site for some of the nation’s biggest events and concerts.

For example, after a long absence, the NCAA ’Basketball Tournaments are returning to Birmingham in 2023 and 2025.  

“This investment puts Birmingham in its proper place in terms of regional routing of events and shows and opportunities – for unique things that haven’t been in Birmingham for a while.”

Tad Snider, BJCC Executive Director and CEO
Pat Byington
Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.

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