CORALVILLE, Iowa – Talk about being true to your school. The owners of McGrath Hawkeye Harley-Davidson are seeking city permission for to build a new facility that, if approved, will feature a façade replicating Kinnick Stadium, the home field for the University of Iowa football team.
Copying the façade will require permission from the university's athletic department, which told the Press-Citizen they discussed the concept with the dealer several months ago, but need to evaluate the idea further. University representatives told the newspaper they were unaware of a building proposal modeled after the stadium was set to go before the Coralville City Council on June 24.
Plans the dealership submitted to the city show a 27,700-sq.-ft. building on a 4.5-acre property along Interstate 80. The building would feature a 182-foot-long brick façade modeled after Kinnick, with the Harley-Davidson logo on a scoreboard-like sign above
"We have not had a chance to learn what Harley-Davidson had to say, and more importantly, really do some significant evaluation as to whether or not the department, and the institution, would want to proceed," Rick Klatt, UI associate director of athletics for external relations, told the newspaper.
Klatt added he thinks UI would need to give its blessing for a building to be modeled after Kinnick because of the "iconic nature" of the stadium, though he said that would be a question for UI's legal and licensing representatives.
In a prepared statement, UI Athletics Director Gary Barta said the university remains interested in McGrath Harley-Davidson's plans.
"We have had several conversations on the proposed design of the proposed Harley-Davidson facility with the McGraths," he said. "We remain very interested in the concept in part because it's an exciting opportunity in a great location, and because of the tremendous longtime support the McGrath's have provided the UI and the Iowa Hawkeyes over many years…While no final decisions or commitments have been made by the University or the Athletic Department, we recognize the City of Coralville meeting is a critical step in the process."
The dealership also plans an outdoor event area on the side of the building with a stage, fire pit, chairs and tables. The move would be Hawkeye Harley Davidson's second in the past 15 years. The dealer hopes to begin construction this summer.
From the Dealernews wires