Monday, December 24, 2018

Thoughts on the new Longhonrn Basketball Arena

"Concerning this temple which you are building, if you walk in My statutes, execute My judgments, keep all My commandments, and walk in them, then I will perform My word with you, which I spoke to your father David."
1 Kings 6:12

Well this is all sorts of interesting:
AUSTIN, Texas — The University of Texas at Austin (UT) and a group led by the Oak View Group (OVG) will build a world-class arena on campus that will be home to Texas Men's and Women's basketball games, graduations, concerts and other events. It is expected to be opened in 2021.

The innovative 35-year agreement between UT and ArenaCo — which includes OVG, Live Nation, C3 Presents and Matthew McConaughey — will be groundbreaking in college athletics and provide a public benefit for UT and the City of Austin for decades to come. The $338 million venue will be constructed on land fully owned by UT without using any university or public money.

The arena will be located on a current parking lot south of Mike A. Myers Stadium. It will replace the 41-year-old Frank C. Erwin Center, which will make way for the future expansion of the Dell Medical School. UT may be responsible for certain infrastructure improvements near the site to make it ready for construction.


The 10,000-seat arena will provide an intimate, state-of-the-art men's and women's Longhorn basketball fan experience and feature student seating surrounding the court. Much like how the Erwin Center currently operates, the new venue will be a prime location for university, campus, community and high school events. Additionally, the new arena is designed to expand to 15,000 seats and will provide a world-class venue for touring concerts and shows.

[Note: Emphasis added.]

  • That no public or university funds will be used in constructing the area is awesome.  There's also (unlike certain other local sports related construction projects) no land giveaway.  In other words, this might actually be a good deal for the public!!!
  • We didn't realize the Erwin Center's age.
  • The fluctuating seating capacity alleviates our biggest concern.  10,000 seats is plenty for the overwhelming majority of basketball games.  As long as they're willing to use the extra seating capacity when a major opponent comes to town (eg. Kansas or OU), ticket prices should remain reasonable.
  • Shaka's seat just got a lot hotter.  Ain't no way the university will be satisfied with the current inconsistent play heading into a new arena.  Rebuilds take time.  Three years is just enough time for a new coach to implement his system.
Bottom Line: Time will tell if this proposal ends up being too good to be true, but at first glace it looks pretty awesome.

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