It was not until 1949, that 1. FSV Mainz 05 was able to play in the Bruchwegstadium again. Two years later, the cinder track-surrounded sporting facility received a ring of stone steps. In 1953 the pitch was transformed into a grass turf, and the main stands got a roof shortly after that. Still, the venue was not a real fancy stadium. And it remained like this for decades. It was not until 1981 that the back straight received a roof as well. The few hundred fans that came to watch 1. FSV Mainz 05 in the nineteen-eighties did not take too much notice of it.
In the nineteen-nineties, the Bruchwegstadium got its first electronic scorebord with light bulbs in it. In 1995, the floodlights symbolized the minimum requirements of professional football.
Show me your stadium and I’ll show you how you are? A grey, mousy mouse. „The greyest among all of them“, says Manager Christian Heidel in retrospective. 1. FSV Mainz 05 has become a second division club, yet one that still lacked the support of the city it was located in and a strong fan generation. The Bruchwegstadium still had a brash, prudish kind of charm to it and only attracted those players who were tough: mold in the locker rooms, scratchy bath tubs where one would endured abrasions every time you had to enter them for treatment of muscular problems. There was nothing glamorous there like a VIP room or a nice bar. Basically, there was nothing.
But after 1. FSV Mainz 05 achieved some minor success, the stadium changed for the better. In 1997, when the FSV initially fought for the promotion to Bundesliga, the stadium received two new stands, and for the very first time, the fans at the Bruchweg felt like they were in an actual stadium. With the new stands came new fans and a fan scene started to develop.
The second extension of the venue also happened when 1. FSV Mainz 05 had hopes of promoting to the Bundesliga. Though missing that goal in a highly dramatic fashion in 2002, the plans to rebuild the main stands were still put to order. A necessity, as the few places the stadium had to offer were not nearly enough for the ever growing fan community of the FSV. In the corners of the stadium, provisional roofless stands were built from steel pipes – a curiosity in the Bundesliga. This finally made the defining charm of the Bruchwegstadium: it was useless when it comes to winning a beauty contest, but it was a stadium that grew with the club and its fans, and its history was present in every stone and every structure.
It’s the stories that make this stadium so special. Whoever felt the helplessness on May 23rd 2004, after having scored a 3:0 win against Eintracht Trier, whoever waited, breathless, for the results from another stadium, hoping, wishing that 1. FSV Mainz 05 would not yet again be betrayed of the promotion to Bundesliga in the very last moment of the season, whoever broke out in collective jubilance, tears of joy and screams of laughter, whoever experienced that will understand. Just that one moment makes the Bruchwegstadium a monument of memories for the whole city of Mainz.
Because it is emotions that make a stadium come alive, moving out of the Bruchwegstadium was not an ending, but a beautiful beginning. When more than 20.000 fans marched from the old venue to the new Coface Arena in the summer of 2011, they moved all their love for football and excitement for their team with them into their new sportive home. Yet the heart of the club is still beating at the Bruchweg. The Coface Arena only turns into an epicenter of football for the home games of 1. FSV Mainz 05. The professional players still train and meet at the old stadium on a daily basis. The youth teams U 23 and U 19 also carry out their home games on the traditional turf.