EUGENE, Ore. — Crews put the finishing touches on the new Zen North Project at Autzen Stadium for the ducks season opener Saturday.
As duck fans walk up the stairs of Autzen it will be a whole new experience, one that project leaders say will be just like taking a walk through the woods in a native Oregon landscape.
The Zen North Project was inspired by Oregon Ducks tradition and the natural beauty of the state. It boasts the two largest man-made waterfalls in North America, 900 tons of boulders from the Columbia River Gorge, and almost all of the 78,000 native Oregon plants.
The lead landscape architect on the project says the idea behind the project was two-fold, easier access for fans and the idea of making Autzen fit more into Oregon’s natural landscape.
“Autzen Stadium, which is a large landmark in Eugene, is like a butte like Spencer’s Butte and Skinners Butte,” said architect Larry Gilbert.
Gilbert says the north end of a butte tends to be more shaded with Douglas fir trees and water. He says they designed the north end of the stadium to mimic the north side of an actual butte.
The best news for Duck fans, the current expansion doesn’t close the door on expansion in the future here at Autzen. In fact, the project was designed with future expansion opportunities in mind.