Princeton announces plan to have 'bubble' over Powers Field each winter

April 5, 2017 3 p.m.

A $3.5 million gift from an anonymous donor will now allow Powers Field to be covered by a climate-controlled seasonal air structure, or "bubble," that will enable the field to be used year-round. The bubble will cover the entire playing field of the facility and will have multiple uses and users.

The bubble will be placed over Powers Field at the end of each football season and will stay in place through each spring. Construction will begin this spring, and the bubble should be in place shortly after the conclusion of the 2017 football season. Among its many uses, the climate-controlled interior will enable Princeton's teams to practice inside as weather necessitates.

Athletics bubble

This spring, construction of a climate-controlled seasonal air structure, "or "bubble," will begin for Powers Field. The bubble should be in place after the conclusion of the 2017 football season. It will be placed over Powers Field at the end of each football season and stay in place through each spring. (Image courtesy of the Department of Athletics)

"We could not be more excited to begin construction on our brand new seasonal air structure," said Mollie Marcoux Samaan, the Ford Family Director of Athletics. "Having a full-field indoor practice facility is something that will benefit all of our student-athletes and will have a hugely positive impact on our coaches' ability to teach during inclement weather." 

The space under the bubble can be subdivided so that more than one team can use it at the same time. It will also be used by campus recreation programs, intramural and club teams, outside groups and youth teams. Beyond that, Princeton's strength and conditioning program can use the space, which will help nearly all 37 of Princeton's teams.

"We are excited for a winter training facility," said Matt Madalon, men's lacrosse head coach. "The ability to train, condition and teach in a facility that protects us from the weather will immediately impact off-season and early season development." 

"The addition of a full-field bubble over Princeton stadium during the winter and spring months will make Princeton's athletic facilities truly world-class, and will provide our team, as well as many other field sport teams at Princeton, with a wonderful facility to train in during very cold or inclement weather," added Chris Sailer, women's lacrosse head coach.

"I can't wait to have our team utilize the bubble to enhance our speed, agility and conditioning in the winter," said Bob Surace, the Charles W. Caldwell Jr. '25 Head Coach of Football. "Our primary offseason focus is always player development, and the bubble will allow our players to train year-round and perform at an even higher level."