Univ. Of Texas Getting New Hoops Arena In Deal With Oak View Group
The Univ. of Texas has "struck an innovative financial agreement" with Oak View Group in which the school will get a $300M basketball arena with "zero out-of-pocket cost," according to Brian Davis of the AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN. The UT System Board of Regents is "set to approve a measure Thursday that will mark the school’s official marriage" with OVG. UT will turn the 6.64 acres just south of Mike A. Myers Stadium over to OVG in a lease arrangement, and OVG "will build and manage the arena, giving UT approximately 60 dates annually for men’s and women’s basketball games, graduations and other school-related functions." Upon completion, UT "will own the building." However, OVG "will recoup its investment by keeping the revenue generated, including things such as concessions, for 10 years." After the first decade, UT "will get a portion of the annual revenue." At most, UT "will have to pay for some incidentals, possibly concerning traffic and utilities." But OVG "will shoulder the bulk of the cost." UT President Greg Fenves said, “This is an innovative deal that will be good for the city and the university.” A source said that the basketball configuration "will be about 10,000 seats with the upper decks closed off for every game, creating an 'intimate' atmosphere." The new arena’s total capacity "could reach 17,000, making it a suitable replacement for the 41-year-old Erwin Center." OVG is "expected to bring concerts, WWE events and whatever else comes through downtown Austin to the new facility" (AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, 12/18).