The Vatican green lights new multi-purpose facility for Livonia campus

 The Vatican green lights new multi-purpose facility for Livonia campus

The new facility will be constructed on the property formerly used as the Ladywood soccer field and the practice field for the Madonna University football team.

With a required blessing of the Vatican in Rome, Italy, construction of a 5,000-seat multi-purpose complex will begin shortly on the campus of Madonna University.

Madonna is partnering with Gold Star Detroit FC Soccer on the facility, which will host Gold Start Detroit FC, Madonna athletic events and concerts.

The project couldn’t receive the go-ahead until it was approved by the Vatican since Madonna is a ministry of the Felician Sisters of North America.

Photo of The Vatican in Rome Italy
The Vatican Rome Italy

“This is an exciting opportunity for Madonna University and the city of Livonia,” said Madonna University President Ian Day. “We are thrilled to welcome Gold Star FC to campus. I want to thank Dan Milstein, Alex Lubyansky and everyone at Gold Star.

“The stadium project represents the beginning of a long-term relationship, and we look forward to a world-class experience for all current and future Crusaders.”

Opening soon

The stadium is set to open in the fall of 2023 and will be located where the former Ladywood High School soccer field existed. Along with athletic events it will also be used for university events and ceremonies.

Displayed is the entrance to Madonna University athletic fields

Ladywood closed following the 2017-18 school year.

Gold Star Detroit FC partnered with Sogility to bring its technology-driven soccer training to the new complex. Sogility leverages a data-driven training model which allows players and coaches to monitor performance through their unique training technology which includes rebound boards with LED lights and neurological equipment, Gold Star’s website explained.

What’s in a name?

Stadium naming rights and corporate sponsorship opportunities will be handled by Gemini Sports. Gemini Sports has worked in this capacity for some of the world’s top venues, including Oracle Arena in Oakland, Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., and Estadio Omnilife in Zapopan, Jalisco, Mexico – home to Liga MX side C.D. Guadalajara.

“We are excited to help bring a first-class venue and organization to Detroit and believe Gold Star will be an attractive property for corporate partners,” says Rob Yowell, president of Gemini Sports. “Soccer fans in Michigan are going to be thrilled with the new stadium’s atmosphere and to have a hometown club with a direct line to a Champions League club in Europe.”

Paving a new path

Madonna University Director of Athletics Noel Emenhiser said the project “will potentially change the entire trajectory of Madonna athletics”.

“We’re grateful for Gold Star and their interest in Madonna athletics along with the work done by the staff here at the university to get this project underway and attract a great partner,” Emenhiser added.

“We would like to thank the Gold Star Football Club for their partnership,” Madonna head football coach Herb Haygood added. “Crusaders everywhere deserve a destination where pride, prestige and performance come together.

“This new stadium will have a game-changing impact for our student-athletes and our campus community in ways that won’t just be felt on Saturdays in the fall. It will energize our community and showcase Madonna’s culture of achieving excellence in all forms.”

Ed Wright

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