A small crowd gathered outside Bryant-Denny Stadium early Monday morning to watch Tuska, a 19-foot tall, seven-ton bronze elephant statue, be lowered into place on its own plaza outside the stadium.

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The statue was recently given as a gift by The Westervelt Company, along with a generous gift from Bill and Mary Battle. It was originally constructed in 2000 by English artist Terry Matthews.

It has resided at North River Yacht Club since it was built but has found a new home in the newly constructed Tuska Plaza on the southeast corner of University Boulevard and Wallace Wade Avenue.

The plaza is set to see a series of renovations including new landscaping, sidewalks surrounding the statue, nighttime lighting elements, and a large pedestal for Tuska to stand on. The statue stands towering over its onlookers, poised ready to rear up on its hind legs, its trunk extended and its head raised to the sky.

The proposed cost of the project totaled roughly $415,000, including the relocation cost. No University of Alabama representative was able to give a timeline for the estimated completion of the plaza.

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