ISR Racing Beat Writer
BLOOMINGTON, IN- Per the Indianapolis Star’s Zach Osterman, Indiana University is planning a major renovation to Assembly Hall. The arena has housed the Indiana Hoosiers basketball team full time since 1971 and is home to 17,472 fans each year. Assembly Hall has basically looked the same since the arena was finished in 1971 as the only changes done have been to the playing surface, a new video board and some minor updates to the bleacher seating under the baskets.
Now, the University is planning a $30-$40 million upgrade to Assembly Hall in efforts to improve the condition of the historic venue.
Athletic Director Fred Glass to the Star, ““Our planning is looking at preserving Assembly Hall, breathing life into that building. I think Hoosier fans will be really excited about our plans. They’re ambitious.”
What Indiana’s trying to do is upgrade the seating behind the South basket, build a new jumbotron, renovate the South lobby, add escalators instead of the ramps used now to get to concourses, add new restrooms, and remodel the existing restrooms and concession stands.
This will be the first major upgrade to the venue as the existing playing surface has been there since 1995 and the existing jumbotron has been in place for the past decade.
There were talks of a new venue as Assembly Hall is unique and not the typical bowl seating that you see in most basketball venues but Glass cited that costs would be between the $200-$300 million mark for that and he’d rather keep costs lower and keep the historic arena.
Eric Smith is a Senior Writer for the Indy Sports Report covering Racing. He’s previously covered Indiana Basketball for Bleacher Report and Rant Sports. Follow Eric and the Indy Sports Report on Twitter.