Birmingham BOE approves $8.7M new Woodlawn High School stadium

Woodlawn High School
Birmingham’s Woodlawn High School is slated to have a new stadium and field house in the fall of 2022. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

This week, the Birmingham Board of Education unanimously approved a bid of $8.7 million to build a stadium and field house at Woodlawn High School. It’s expected that work on the project will be completed in the fall of 2022.

Birmingham City Schools Superintendent Dr. Mark Sullivan, an alum of Woodlawn, said the new stadium will have a huge impact on Woodlawn High School and the community it serves. 

“Woodlawn has a rich history of excellence in academics and athletics,” Sullivan said.  “We are pleased to have the support of the Board of Education on this project.”

2800 Fans

Site of the new Woodlawn High School Stadium and Field House. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Here are the project details:

  • Capacity: The new stadium will accommodate 2800 fans
  • Field: The field will be synthetic 
  • Bid: Argo Building Company won the bid to build the stadium & field house
  • Location: The stadium will be built on the site of the northeast Birmingham school’s current practice field
  • Fun Fact: The new stadium will be completed during the 100th anniversary of the opening of the school at its current location in January 1922 (Bhamwiki)

Woodlawn’s Rich Athletic History

Woodlawn High School has produced some of our state’s greatest athletes, including football players Harry Gilmer, Tony Nathan and Karlos Dansby. 

Dansby, a former Auburn All American who played in the NFL for 14 years, has been a leading advocate for the new Woodlawn stadium.

Legendary Coach Bobby Bowden, the 2nd winningest head coach in Division I football also graduated from Woodlawn.

In 2015, Woodlawn High School made headlines when the film Woodlawn was released. The inspirational Christian drama told the story of Woodlawn football great Tony Nathan and desegregation in the 1970s. 

Unanimous Approval

The unanimous approval of the new stadium comes after the BOE rejected the bid earlier in the month because the estimated costs of the stadium had doubled since the project was announced in the Summer of 2021. At the meeting this week, thanks to assurances by Superintendent Sullivan, the Board worked out their differences clearing the way for construction. 

“This is something I had hoped to have done many years ago,” said Birmingham City Schools District One Board Member Sherman Collins, Jr. during the discussion about the stadium at the November 23rd meeting. “Unfortunately we have not had the opportunity to do it. I’m all in favor of our students having what they need to be successful and proud to attend Birmingham City Schools.”

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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