University of Texas basketball could eventually play games at a modern 10,000-seat arena, under a vision recently laid out by Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte.
The current home to Texas’ basketball programs is the Frank Erwin Center. That facility originally opened in 1977, and its aging condition has contributed to plenty of discussion about replacing it in the future.
Under the vision offered by Del Conte during an event on Tuesday, the basketball programs would move into a 10,000-seat arena that is designed to create an intimate atmosphere while offering amenities that resemble higher-end NBA arenas. More from the Austin American-Statesman:
His comments about wanting a 10,000-seat basketball arena will draw scrutiny from all quarters. On the surface, it sounds small. But school officials are grappling with a tough decision which is best — a small arena that looks and feels packed every game or a larger arena that might not sell out that often?
Del Conte envisions something along the likes of the American Airlines Center or Staples Center, or “mini versions,” he said.
Texas issued a Request for Qualifications and Proposal in February, signaling its interest in moving forward with the construction of a new arena. According to that request, the new on-campus arena would be designed to host multiple types of events, including basketball, concerts, and other gatherings. The Frank Erwin Center would eventually be demolished to accommodate expansion of the Dell Medical School.