The Kibbie Dome, named to honor the late William H. Kibbie, has been the home of Vandal athletics since 1975 with the completion of the barrel-arch-roof, an engineering feat that, at the time, earned the structure the award for America’s Outstanding Structural Engineering Achievement of 1976.
Construction on the Dome began in 1969 after fire partially Destroyed Neale Stadium, which was on the site where the Kibbie Dome is today. Kibbie, president of JELCO – a Salt Lake City industrial contracting firm – and a UI alum, contributed $300,000 to initiate the project funding. The field and stands were completed and in use for the 1971 season, although it took another four years to enclose the 14-story structure. The east end addition, which houses athletic department offices in addition to locker rooms, a weight room and training room, was completed in 1982. The Kibbie Dome has had another enhancement with the addition of the Norm and Becky Iverson Speed and Strength Center, a hydrotherapy pool, and new locker rooms for football, volleyball, and men's and women's basketball.
The 93,000 square feet of floor space in the Kibbie Dome provides a multi-purpose facility to house various athletic events, graduation, and a variety of concerts and special events. The Kibbie Dome is home to Vandal Football, Men’s and Women’s Track & Field, Men’s and Women’s Tennis and Men’s and Women’s Basketball teams.
The Kibbie Dome officially seats 16,000 for football, although a record 17,600 witnessed the UI-Boise State football game on Nov. 18, 1989. In February 2001, the Kibbie Dome gave way to a unique transformation to enhance the atmosphere for Men’s and Women’s Basketball. Every November, the 16,000 seat Kibbie Dome is transformed into the 7,000 seat Cowan Spectrum for Men’s and Women’s Basketball. Its small arena like appearance creates an intimate and competitive setting for Vandal Basketball. The "arena-within-an-arena" provides an intimate atmosphere and up-close-and-personal feel for UI basketball fans.
The surface inside the Kibbie Dome for football is a portable $1.4 million Astroturf “Magic Carpet” system which rolls the turf in and out from the west side of the Kibbie Dome floor. As air ducts on the floor filter air under the carpet, the pullies work to pull the turf across the 93,000 square feet of Polyurethane Tartan surface. The carpet system can be pulled in or out in about one hour, which allows for the Dome’s multi-purpose environment.
The tartan surface of the Kibbie Dome allows for a competitive practice and competition site for Indoor Track & Field and Tennis. The 290-meter indoor track is home to Vandal Track & Field and nine tennis courts are the winter home to the Vandal Tennis teams.